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The Warriors is a video game based on the Cult Classic movie of the same title, developed by Rockstar Games and released in 2005. The storyline acts as both a prequel and a recreation of the film. Apart from a few platforming challenges, it controls like an arcade Beat 'em Up, and it is one of few successful examples of the genre in 3D.

In the year 1979, the Coney Island Warriors street gang is in the middle of some tough times, a fact which isn't helped by them feuding with the Destroyers, a larger and more established gang that also claims the territory around Coney Island. The first act of the game revolves around the Warriors' founder, Cleon, and his struggle to maintain their slice of Coney Island. The second act focuses on the gang's efforts to make a name for themselves in New York City. The third act drops players in the middle of Manhattan during the events of the film itself.


The game was initially released for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox on October 17, 2005, and later for the PlayStation Portable on February 12, 2007. On May 28, 2013, it was re-released digitally as a PS2 classic for the PlayStation 3, and later on the PlayStation 4 on July 5, 2016 with upscaled visuals and trophy support.

The Warriors contains the following tropes:

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  • Accidental Pervert: If you try to mug any female pedestrians for some quick cash, some of them will suspect you're trying to rape them and spray you in the face with mace.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The video game includes the entire plot of the film, but the game also adds a backstory to the foundation of the gang and the time leading up to the fateful night. Also, a number of gangs that didn't appear in the movie, such as the Destroyers, make an appearance in the game.
  • Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: In the movie, Masai demands to know who the Warriors are, and no one can answer him. This is kept in the game, but it seems very unlikely given how many gangs the Warriors have beaten and the dangerous reputation they develop because of it. There's even a cutscene with Cyrus instructing one of the Riffs to keep tabs on the gang from Coney.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us:
    • In "Destroyed", Virgil sends his men to intercept the invading Warriors while locking Cleon and Swan in a fire trap, while in the same level, Cleon and his men storm into the Destroyers' hangout. And then there's the Rogues and the Riffs descending on Coney in the final level...
    • Gang invasions are common on Warrior turf, as seen in the optional missions.
  • Alternate Continuity: Several changes occur from the movie, most notably in the final battle with Luther.
  • Always Night: It's always twilight or pitch dark when the Warriors hit the pavement. The only stage set in the daytime is the showdown with Luther, and only in the interest of movie accuracy.
  • Amusement Park of Doom: The Hi-Hats confront the Warriors in the eighth level, chasing them into a fun house on the Coney grounds. The Warriors beat up some Hi-Hats in an "African village" exhibit before fleeing from a runaway "mine-cart" ride and finally facing off against Chatterbox at the center of the fun house.
  • And That's Terrible: If the mugging is successful, some female victims shout "Stealing is wrong, boy!" after you as you run off.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: In the final battle with Luther, once you weaken him enough, you have to throw a knife at him to finish him off just like Swan did in the movie. However, if you botch your throw, Luther will send some mooks with knives after you.
  • Artificial Brilliance: Your fellow Warriors are always under AI control, but unlike other games, your allies do what they are told every single time you issue a command and they rarely get stuck or bug out. On top of this, your fellow Warriors kick a lot of ass and rarely require babysitting unless things get too heated and they will always help you out in a co-op attack if you are holding a foe or they will hold one for you. Should you get knocked out and have flash on you, a fellow warrior will attempt to go to your body and use your own flash to revive you, and if the police cuff you up, they will do their best to free you. Needless to say, your back will always be covered.
  • Artificial Stupidity: ...On the other hand, your allies are ghastly at finding cover. They will pass up nearby hiding spots in order to sprint across the map, often crossing the enemy's line of sight to do so! Also, sometimes when you duck into the cover of the shadows, rather than follow you directly, your fellow Warriors will climb over an obstacle next to the shadows, such as a dumpster or a stack of wooden palettes, to drop into the hiding spot rather than just step inside it like you did, risking being seen by enemies.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • Cleon, who gets killed at the start of the film, plays a central role in the game.
    • The Hi-Hats and Boppers play a major role in the game, while in the film they're just background extras glimpsed in the crowd of gangs during the opening of the film.
    • Rembrandt plays a larger role, especially in the early part of the game, as he functions as an Audience Surrogate for a Justified Tutorial.
  • Awesome McCoolname: Many of the gang members run around with these (such as Saracens leader Edge), whereas others have rather unimpressive names (like the Turnbull's Birdie) and others simply use their normal names (pretty much all the members of the Hurricanes).
  • Badass Boast: Virgil gives a pretty good one before his boss fight in "Destroyed":
    Virgil: It's over? It's OVER?! It's over when I say so, you dumb shit! How many of your boys do I gotta kill before you realize who's the boss? I'm the boss, FUCKER!
  • Badass Bystander: Stefano the butcher, who comes at you with a meat cleaver when Swan and Cowboy come around to show him the store owners of that area now must pay the Warriors for protection.
  • Bad Boss: Numerous.
    • Luther is even more abusive in the game, terrorizing his goons with his gun and shrugging off the murder of two Rogues by the Furies ("Who caaaaaares? They were getting on my nerves"). Made even worse when it's hinted he just used them as bait to escape from the Furies.
    • The priggish leader of the Jones Street Boys, Knox, complains about being Surrounded by Idiots.
    • When one of Virgil's men, Beansie, says he never thought Cleon could get so "heavy", Virgil snaps and pummels him with a pool cue. He's generally a complete asshole to his men and doesn't hesitate to use them as bait to try escaping in the mission "Destroyed".
    • Chatterbox is unkind to his henchmen, too, despite their fanatical loyalty to him.
    • Birdie, while not the warlord, is a high-ranking lieutenant (and the highest ranking Turnbulls member we see in the game), and he is a tightly-wound bully to his own men, partly out of jealousy for their "good legs."
  • Bad-Guy Bar: Several:
    • The Red Devil, which is "neutral ground" despite being in the Gun Hill district of the Bronx (the Turnbull A.C.'s' territory). A band in the corner plays punk rock. The Riffs also have a neutral club nearby.
    • The Stripes and Solids. Located in East (Spanish) Harlem, it has a definite Latin American look and feel to it.
    • The Black Cat (actually a strip joint) in Harlem. In the bonus level "Sharp Dressed Man," you have to repeatedly tip a stripper so that she will tell you where to find the leader of the Boppers. (We also visit a pool hall and a discotheque during the Harlem sequence.)
  • Bad Guys Play Pool: In the Boppers level, one cutscene opens up with the Boppers playing pool in a bar.
    • Virgil is seen playing pool before sending Cleon and Vermin to the trap he set for them in the first flashback mission. He and other Destroyers are also playing pool in the mission "Destroyed" when a scout comes to inform Virgil of the Warriors raiding their stores.
  • Battle Amongst the Flames: With the Warriors on the march, Virgil flees to his bunker for supplies and explosives. He causes an uncontrollable fire by lobbing molotovs at Cleon and Vermin, setting off his entire arsenal. The second and third phases of the battle are hampered by the encroaching blaze and flaming debris that drops from the ceiling.
  • Battle in the Rain: When Cleon delivers his parcel to the Satan's Mothers, an ominous storm rolls in. The subsequent fight with Spider and Tiny is in a rain-slicked cage.
  • Battle Trophy: These are the leftovers from each Warrior's gang initiation. Cleon and Vermin picked up a German flat helmet while eluding the Satan's Mothers; the crown was won by Swan and Cowboy during the "King of the Hill" contest; a bloodied t-shirt labeled "FUCK U HUNS" which was worn by Fox in Chinatown; Ajax came away with a pair of pink panties; and Cochise brought back a size 9 Bopper hat (taken from Big Moe's bald dome).
  • Big Bad: Virgil, before being replaced by the even more demented Luther.
  • Big Good: Cyrus, while he's alive at least. He shields the Warriors from retribution after they kill Birdie.
  • Big "NO!": Chatterbox after the Warriors get through with his prized art collection. Sully has a similar reaction to his Pinto getting totaled.
    Sully: NooOOOOOOOOOO! That car was my life!!
  • Bilingual Bonus: Several characters in East Harlem speak Puerto Rican Spanish, while several in Chinatown speak Cantonese; neither tongue is translated, making for some pretty sneaky profanities. (In East Harlem, for example, one Hurricane threatens to "shit on your mothers.")
  • Blatant Lies: The Orphans announce a major victory over the Warriors on the radio — without ever having fought them, mind you. Cleon is unamused.
  • Bloodier and Gorier / Lighter and Softer: Incredibly, the game manages to be both. It's a lot more violent than the 1979 film, with the carnage often approaching horror-movie levels (just try a sneak attack from the shadows while carrying a knife and see what happens), and injuries carried over into cutscenes. That tiny scratch on Michael Beck's cheek at the end of the movie seems laughable in retrospect. However, the Camp for which the film was famous gets turned Up to Eleven here.
  • Bond One-Liner: Sanchez going all, "They can't hold me down, you know? Try to grab a Hurricane, it's like air, man, like air!" He demonstrates this after the Warriors chase him over a steep ledge.
    Ajax: "Did you see that wimp fly?"
    Cochise: "Like air, man, like air!"
  • Boss Arena Idiocy: There's an unlimited supply of bottles during the fights with the game's bigger foes, like Diego/Vargas and Chatterbox. As these characters absolutely cannot be grappled, rarely flinch while being attacked and have a long reach, you will need those bottles.
    • Speaking of Chatterbox, he's smart enough to dodge the out-of-control roller coaster (which the Hi-Hats activated themselves) inside the funhouse — but he can be momentarily dazed while standing on the tracks. You receive a bigger bonus for taking him down using only fisticuffs.
    • The Furies' lair is encircled by flaming barrels.
    • Averted with Big Moe's boss fight, as there are no bottles to help you and his two girls will constantly mace you if you don't take them out, plus Big Moe also has long range, fast attacks and can't be grappled. The best option to beat him is to go into the fight carrying as much flash as possible, then do enough damage to knock his hat off (which thankfully dazes him for a couple of seconds), put it on and get the little rhythm game right, giving you one flash, which is very much needed.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: In the cutscene before the duel with Big Moe. The goliath gangster is spotted with a girl on his lap, whining about an incident which "hurt his feelings."
  • Carry a Big Stick: Diego casually snaps a support beam from the ceiling like a Twix bar, then proceeds to chase you around while swinging it.
  • Character Exaggeration: Snow, although particularly stoic in the original film, is noticeably boisterous in the video game adaptation.
  • Chickification: Mercy joins the fray during the subway restroom brawl toward the end of the 1979 film, leaping atop one of the overalled thugs, slamming the back of his head against a bathroom stall and biting his shoulder. In the game, she's been reduced to a Damsel in Distress whom, as Swan, you must rescue from those same thugs. If you fail, Mercy dies and the game is over.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Even more so than the film, with the members of the Turnbull A.C.'s in particular having very filthy mouths.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The stage numbers on the loading screen, each one representing the local gang's colors. They also resemble the code bar as denoted by MTA trains.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Most of the gangs don't like to fight fair. Improvised Weapons, such as planks and trashcans are a common sight and tactics such as using spraypaint as impromptu mace and slamming heads into walls are part of the gameplay mechanics.
  • Conveniently Timed Distraction: When Cowboy and Cochise need to get inside the Jones Street Boys hangout to plant some stolen goods, a bunch of hobos start messing with their hangout. The leader of the gang takes a couple of his men to deal with them while Cowboy and Cochise sneak inside (though it's lightly hinted that Cowboy and Cochise may have goaded the hobos into it offscreen).
  • Cool, but Inefficient:
    • Furies leader, Cobb, uses two baseball bats duct tapped together as his weapon. As you can tell, being smashed by this weapon seriously hurts but its power is awesome once you can get it after killing Cobb (sadly you can't carry it with you to the next level). However, using a weapon like that would require a ton of upper body strength to wield effectively. The weapon shows up again in the Armies of the Night minigame as an Infinity +1 Sword.
    • The final two upgrades available from side missions are the ability to open your own cuffs after being arrested and the ability to enter Rage Mode by taking Flash at full health. Unfortunately, the side missions that unlock these upgrades only become available on completion of the game. The latter ability is also compounded by the fact that Flash is much better put to use for healing and is relatively rare as a random drop.
    • Knife dealers. Knives are no more durable than any other melee weapon and cost $50 apiece. For that amount of money in a game where cash is fairly scarce, you could buy two hits of Flash and have enough left over to buy two cans of spraypaint.
  • Counterattack: Putting yourself in a blocking stance may sometimes have your character duck to avoid the attack. Pressing the attack button at the right time afterwards will cause a counterattack, which also helps you score more points.
  • Dance Battler: The Boppers in cutscenes. "Let's bust a move!"
  • A Day in the Limelight: Each of the Warriors from the movie is playable at some point, with Cleon and Rembrandt getting a lot of the focus before the meeting.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: During mission 9, Stefano helps you fend off the Destroyers in his store.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Cleon is the main focus for most of the game, right up until his death at the meeting.
  • Demoted to Extra: Mercy's role in the game is far smaller and less significant than in the movie. As her subplot with Swan is removed, she barely does anything throughout her time in the game.
  • Dirty Coward:
    • Luther of course.
    • Sanchez, a smarmy hurricanes member in East Harlem who owes the Warriors some money. When you confront him, he repeatedly runs away while his homies try to make short work of you. Ajax finally manages to corner him on top of a tenement, presses him toward the edge - and then shouts "BOO!", causing Sanchez to scream and fall backward onto a car in the street below.
    • Also Sully, the leader of the Orphans and Mercy's former boyfriend, whose boast about taking on the Warriors rings hollow once the Warriors themselves confront him and his goons in Tremont. Sully panics, retreats behind a locked gate....and then continues to taunt the Warriors.
  • Disney Villain Death:
    • After leading Ajax on a chase all over Spanish Harlem, Sanchez is finally cornered on a roof. He finally agrees to pay the Warriors the money he owes them — but he comes up short. Ajax yells, "Boo!" causing the terrified Sanchez to topple over the ledge.
    • L.C., the junkie Warchief of the Destroyers. He winds up in much the same position as Sanchez. However, he's too stoned to be afraid or even notice the threats and announces he has a plane to catch — whereupon he jumps. Subverted - he hurts his leg and hobbles away like a fool.
    • Subverted again with Chatterbox. He gets crushed beneath a collapsing pulley system, but manages to walk it off, albeit with bruises and a leg injury.
    • Birdie is defeated when he rolls his wheelchair too close to the train platform while the Warriors pelt him with bricks. One well-timed bottle later, he spins out of control and breaks his neck.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: In Cochise's flashback mission, the doorman at the pool hall will ask for a hefty amount of cash to allow Cochise and Snow in, and while cash can be obtained by mugging the many civilians, swiping car radios or robbing a couple of stores, cops are quick to appear in this level. Paying the doorman can be avoided, however, by taking and wearing a hat from any member of the Boppers. The doorman will confuse Cochise for a member of the Boppers and will allow him and Snow to enter without needing to pay (and letting you keep that cash for much needed flash for the boss fight).
  • Doomed by Canon: Because the game eventually takes place at the same time that the movie does, several major characters are still destined to bite the dust. Cleon is killed by the Riffs after being falsely accused of killing their leader, Cyrus. Fox is also killed when he wrestles with a cop in a subway station and is tossed towards an oncoming train. Ajax is arrested for attempting to rape a woman and is likely spending the rest of his time in jail.
  • Dual Boss:
    • Tiny and his diminutive boss, Spider, chase Cleon and Vermin up to the roof of a warehouse.
    • The other co-leader of the Hurricanes, Vargas, appears on the upstairs balcony once Diego starts to tire, and eventually joins the fray in earnest.
  • Duel Boss: Luther in the final level. Well, the first part anyway, before he pulls a gun out and then sends his goons after you once you beat him down. If you start the level with 2 players, Luther will have a mook with him to make the fight a Dual Boss type.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: As with the film, a large number of gangs, including the Warriors, are multiracial.
  • Evil Cripple: Birdie, a lieutenant of the Turnbull AC's, and a Vietnam War veteran.
  • Evil Former Friend: Virgil to Cleon. In Cleon's flashback level, he used to be friends with Virgil and was with the Destroyers gang, along with his friend, Vermin. Virgil's true colors are shown when he sends Vermin and Cleon to get some drugs and make the exchange with another gang, the Satan's Mothers. Things get extremely sour when the Mothers find out the drugs are fake and they attempt to kill Vermin and Cleon. After surviving, the two guys confront Virgil and he claims Cleon is going behind his back and trying to snuff him out so Cleon can run the Destroyers gang. The two in the main storyline are shown to be extremely bitter towards each other after that and Cleon vows to kill Virgil once he found out Virgil had Ash killed off in an ambush.
  • Fantastic Drug: Flash, which restores all your health. One of the game's bonus missions in the neutral Coney Island zone is taking several hits of Flash, which makes everything go blurry, then try to find and bring back a foam finger in an allotted time. One of the game's final missions (after finishing the storyline) is to acquire and then take 10 hits of Flash, which will allow the player to go into instant rage mode if their health is full when they use the flash.
  • Flat Character: Ash. He barely gets any screen time and is resorted to being the Player 2 character in the first few tutorial missions during Rembrandt's initiation into the Warriors. Because Ash isn't shown a lot, his character never develops, and the only personality trait we get from him is an eagerness to prove he's tough and a minor moment where he says he has "claustrophobicness". Unlike the rest of the main Warriors cast, Ash has no backstory other than he joined the gang along with Rembrandt, but we never see them interact (Ash seems to be most friendly with Vermin instead of Rembrandt). However, Ash is killed by the Destroyers halfway through the game and this event sets off a war against the gang by the Warriors.
  • Framing the Guilty Party: The preppy Jones Street Boys are in cahoots with some Dirty Cops. Your job is to make it look as though the JSBs are holding back loot from their cohorts, which should anger the cops enough to break the truce. As expected, the cops round up the gang and arrest them, unaware that the Warriors hid stolen goods in the trunk of their police cruiser, as well.
  • Friendly Local Chinatown: As part of Fox's initiation, he and Vermin are dumped in Chinatown... with the added wrinkle of "FUCK U HUNS!" spray-painted on their shirts. Thanks, Cleon.

  • Gang Initiation Fight: The combat tutorial of the game is Rembrandt being throw into this. Ajax and Snow's initiation also involved this, at one point having to fight off a good 10 to 12 Warriors to earn their vests.
  • Genius Bruiser / Mad Artist: Chatterbox is a short-tempered, potty-mouthed Fat Bastard who also happens to be a patron of the fine arts. He is an amateur artist himself, and his "masterpieces" are clearly inspired by the classic works of such artists as Botticelli and Van Gogh.
  • Go for the Eye:
    • Rembrandt's trademark attack, mainly with his strong grab attacks, is spraying paint into the opponent's eyes.
    • The player can do this with any character as long as they have spray paint, making the opponent wince back for a moment, but it uses up one spray can from your inventory. The Moonrunners also have this as their trademark, spraying your eyes and blurring your vision for a few moments.
    • Some female characters, such as Big Moe's girls, can use mace on you.
  • Gotta Kill 'Em All: One of the objectives in "Destroyed" is picking off Virgil's top men.
  • Groin Attack: During the fight with Virgil, he'll pounce from the shadows and knee Cleon in the groin, immobilizing you for a few seconds. Irritatingly, there is no defense against this attack and the camera angle changes to make it specifically so you can't see Virgil hide again. Birdie also makes a habit of running over peoples' testicles with his wheelchair, a fate suffered by Fox and Snow. Some characters also go for groin attacks during their stronger grab moves, such as Vermin, Rembrandt and female characters.
  • Guttural Growler: Ajax has become this compared to the film, mostly due to his actor ageing.
  • Harder Than Hard: Unleash the Fury difficulty. Not only can you die in just a few hits, but your instant kill attack in rage mode is nerfed so it's required to do it at least twice to kill one enemy.
  • Have a Nice Death: Die in the game and the DJ mocks you.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Virgil getting roasted by his own explosives.
  • Hold the Line:
    • During Ajax's initiation, he's on the run from approximately 300 Destroyers. The bonus objective is to stand your ground and fight them off anyway.
    • During the first ambush by the Hi-Hats, Snow must keep the gang alive while they wait for the elevator doors to open.
  • Holding Out for a Hero:
    • In the cutscenes before Cochise challenges some Boppers, we see them mugging locals, pimp-slapping women and generally being a menace.
    • This one is easy to miss. Throughout Fox's initiation, we see the Chinatown locals getting harassed and blackmailed by the Huns. The fight with Ghost takes place in a marketplace beneath his base; on the upper echelon, you can see civilians cheering on Fox and Vermin from behind a fence.
  • Hot-Blooded:
    • Ajax is the clearest example by far, with Cochise and Ash also counting as this when compared to other members of the Warriors.
    • A lot of members from rival gangs will also count as this due to their eagerness for fighting and mayhem, most noticeably the Turnbulls.
  • How We Got Here: The video game begins with the movie's opening, then jumps back in time; the gameplay starts ninety days before the movie's story, with Rembrandt joining the Warriors, and follows the chain of events leading up to the meeting. The movie itself is covered in the final missions. Bonus levels extend the backstory even further, going back one year prior to the events of the movie, when Cleon and Vermin quit the Destroyers, recruited Swan and Cowboy (who had actually left the Destroyers earlier), and initiated Ajax, Snow, Fox, and Cochise.
  • Hufflepuff House: The Saracens of Bensonhurst, described as a "heavy set" by Cleon and mentioned that they have a fair bit of pull with the Riffs. In exchange for rubbing out a rival gang, the Saracen leader promises to put in a good word with the Riffs so the Warriors can get an invite for the big conclave. This is the only friendly gang in both the game and movie.
  • I Can't Believe It's Not Heroin!: Flash is essentially cocaine.
  • I Fought the Law and the Law Won: Cops are difficult (though not impossible) to K.O., their batons pack a wallop, they can keep up with your Warriors in a foot chase, and — much like a regular gang — they will swarm from all corners of the map if one cop sounds an alert. They also cuff any gangsters whom they manage to wrestle to the ground. A few missions, most notably "No Permits, No Parley", force you to engage the cops to free your men, though distracting them is preferred. It is never advisable to stand your ground against police.
  • Improbable Weapon User: If you can pick it up, you can use it as a weapon.
  • Interface Screw: Getting maced will cause the screen to be blurry for a while, making it difficult to see where everything is.
  • Inn Security:
    • As the game progresses, some of the flash dealers will simply steal your money and vanish into the night. You'll have to be quick if you want to catch them.
    • You may find that gangsters have already called dibs on a few hiding spots (where your Warriors would normally duck and hide)... though you wouldn't know this the first time, since they are concealed in shadow. Trying to hide in the same spot as them will end up with them attacking you, blowing the cover of the shadows and attracting nearby cops.
  • Jive Turkey: The terms introduced in the films are kept and used in the same contexts, and others are added: a gang's spray-painted logo is called a "burner", the word "toy" is used in the same way as one would use "wimp", etc. It's almost enough to warrant its own glossary.
  • Justified Tutorial: Rembrandt's initiation into the gang is the game's first level, so this is used to get the player used to mechanics while also establishing Rembrandt's status as a newcomer.
  • Large and in Charge: Several of the game's rival Warlords ("Tiny", Vargas, Diego, Chatterbox, Cobb, and Big Moe) are around 6'5" tall.
  • Large Ham: The voice cast embraces the setting's cheesiness with gusto. The bosses in particular don't chew the scenery so much as demolish it.
  • Laughing Mad: Virgil (Cleon's old mentor whose double-crossing of him sets the events of the game in motion) has clearly lost every shred of his sanity by the time Cleon finally confronts him. ("Ain't none of your boys gonna protect you against MEE-EEE!")
  • Leeroy Jenkins:
    • Ajax, of course. He's the most hotheaded individual in the whole gang and can be very effective at getting himself into major trouble. One level depicts his and Snow's first night as members of the gang, in which they intrude on the Destroyers' turf and ultimately get int a series of fights with large numbers of them, prompting Cleon to snap at him, "First night with us and you're already stirring shit up?!"
    • Vermin also threatens to become this after the Destroyers finally declare all-out war on their West Coney rivals and murder Vermin's best friend, Ash. As Cleon is laying out the gang's attack strategy, the impulsive Vermin completely loses his temper: "Bullshit! I'll kill 'em all!" He has to be physically restrained by the other Warriors and Cleon gives him a very stern talking to to make him come to his senses.
  • Limit Break: The Rage system where dealing damage to enemies builds up your rage and once it's full, you can unleash it to be invincible for a set amount of time, have higher strength, and your special attack changes to become an instant kill to anyone but boss characters. One of the final side missions on the Warrior's turf will let you go into Rage mode at will if your health is full and you pop some flash.
  • Lockpicking Minigame: Certain stores will be locked and you can lock-pick the locks to open the doors, hopefully without triggering the alarm. Also, certain characters are better at lock-picking than others. Failing the mini-game sets off the alarm, which gives you limited time to loot the place before the cops come, and if you flee from them and return to the store, you'll find it locked again, but this time unable to be lockpicked and all the loot you didn't get will be unattainable. However, succeeding in the mini-game gives you 1,000 points on your score and the alarm doesn't go off, giving you plenty of time to loot the store at your leisure, unless a civilian sees you doing so and tries ratting you out to the cops.
  • Marathon Level: The train-yard in "All-City". Navigating it is made more difficult by roving packs of Moonrunners and security guards, later joined by cops who will most definitely outnumber you. Unlike every other level, this one all takes place on a single map. So if you happen to die or reset, have fun re-tagging all of the graffiti you already sprayed. Oh, and you're playing as Rembrandt, who is specced for tagging as opposed to combat.
  • Mini-Game Credits: The credits have you controlling Masai and the Riffs beating the hell out of the Rogues.
  • Malevolent Mugshot: Ever-humble Virgil appears on the Destroyer's banner, wearing a Badass Armfold and a scowl. The banner is under construction in Cleon's flashback to his days with the Destroyers, implying who's really in charge here.
  • Man on Fire: Molotov Cocktails are relatively common in the game, often being strewn around in areas with enemies nearby, and some can be found in liquor stores. The Destroyers wield these as their signature weapon - and Virgil, their leader, is killed by this very method. Flaming barrels are also plentiful and perfect targets for thrown enemies.
  • Meaningful Name: In Mission 12 when Cowboy and Cochise are tasked with setting up the Jones Street Boys and a pair of corrupt cops on their payroll, police chief Harrison reveals one of the cops' names to be Judas.
  • Money for Nothing: Averted. You'll need every last dollar if you want to purchase flash, graffiti paint or weapons and some missions will require you to pay an NPC to advance in the level. Luckily you can never be in an unwinnable situation if money is required since there'll always be civilians and/or rival gang members you can mug (and new ones will spawn in eventually), but unless you get lucky and mug someone that has a ton of cash or a gang member carrying flash (saving you money for buying it that can be used for other things), prepare to do some grinding.
  • Mook Lieutenant: Seen amongst some gangs, with differences to their outfits.
    • Destroyer lieutenants wear baseball caps with the brim facing to the side and have blue stripes on their shirt sleeves.
    • Hurricane lieutenants wear blue shirts and their hats have a wider brim.
    • Bopper lieutenants wear gold shirts underneath their vests.
    • Moonrunner lieutenants wear red jackets.
    • Saracen lieutenants wear white sleeveless shirts with black trim.
    • Jones Street Boys lieutenants have the color white rather than yellow in their shirts.
    • Hi-Hat lieutenants have the color white rather than red in their shirts.
    • Baseball Fury lieutenants wear black uniforms.
    • Savage Hun lieutenants wear more traditional martial arts clothing, black with a red flame design, and no hats.
    • Orphan lieutenants wear brown vests.
    • Turnbull lieutenants wear overalls and bandannas around their necks.
  • More Criminals Than Targets: There are probably a dozen Moonrunners for every one security guard in the train-yard.
  • Monster Clown: Chatterbox's costume is of a grotesque clown rather than a mime like his henchmen.
  • Named by the Adaptation: Pretty much every gang member, but the biggest examples are:
    • The Riffs' new leader who takes over after Cyrus' death is named 'Masai'.
    • The Orphans' leader is named 'Sully', while his second-in-command is named 'Jesse'.
    • Luther's second-in-command who drove the Rogues' hearse in the movie is named 'Crispy'.
  • Needle in a Stack of Needles:
    Cleon: You wanna be a Warrior? Go grab us a Bopper's hat off one of their heads and then, we'll talk.
    Cochise: Shit, man, that ain't nothin'!
    Cleon: (rethinks it) But if you wanna be a Warrior, it's gotta be a size... nine.
    Cochise: A size nine!? That's a bucket, man, not a hat!
  • Nerd Glasses: Beansie from the Destroyers wears them, and is the only gang member we see in the game who wears glasses. When you take into account the four main Destroyers (Virgil, LC, Lemmy and Beansie himself) and the times they appear throughout the game, he gets beat up the most often out of all of them.
  • Nice Hat: You can pick up a nice bonus from stealing enemies' hats. Your Warriors sometimes comment on this. ("Look at this stupid thing!"). Cochise's initiation involves stealing a specific-sized hat from the Boppers... which is harder than it sounds. Then there's Cowboy's hat, which he'll almost always go back for if it's knocked off his head. If you pick it up before he does, he'll whine and ask you to give it back, which you can't until it's knocked off your head so he can pick it up himself.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • The second act of the game focuses on Cleon's efforts to impress the Riffs. His purpose is to receive an invite to the summit.
    • In "All-City", Rembrandt suggests bashing the police radio to prevent the guards from radioing in. The radio turns out to have been connected to the local police precinct, and the cops swarm in anyway.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: Part of the responsibilities of the Warchief is to herd everyone safely to the exit. In some missions, namely "Boys in Blue" and "No Permits, No Parley", the gang must be re-constituted before you can progress.
  • One-Hit Kill:
    • A Rage-induced special attack will instantly take out any mook. Elsewhere, you can find back-alley dealers who will sell you a knife, which will also instantly kill anyone you use it on. The downside is that the knife is Too Awesome to Use. Once you use it, the knife breaks, and you'll be lucky if you ever find one in any of the story missions proper.
    • Knives can last a little longer if one uses them during a grab attack, which very often can be an instant kill as well.
    • Taking down a mook from behind while you hide in the shadows. While some of the Warriors will go for just knocking out enemies with a blow to the back of the head, other Warriors will go for neck breaking, and if one carries a knife, the enemy gets their throat slit.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: After you beat Masai in Armies of the Night, the ghost of Cyrus rises from his grave. The spirits of Cleon and Fox (in two-player mode only) arise as well, and the final battle is fought between ghosts.
  • Palette Swap: Unleash the Fury difficulty swaps textures between The Warriors and The Baseball Furies, which can lead to a creepy and hilarious moment when you run into the Furies with Warriors textures. But the funniest moment from the swap of textures is arguably in the flashback mission where Ajax and Snow join the Warriors and have their vests stolen by the Destroyers. In Unleash the Fury difficulty, the vests are basically the entire Baseball Furies outfit and face paint, so when you see LC with his girlfriend and Ajax then going to have sex with her in the bathroom, you get a Baseball Fury instead of an attractive girl.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: A particularly rewarding example, considering who Chatterbox is. After he ruins a gang spray-art contest the Warriors participate in (even throwing the organizer, Scopes, off a balcony for good measure), the Warriors have to leg it while the Hi-Hats pursue them. At one point, the Warriors end up falling into Chatterbox's own Shrine to Self. After thinking about what he had done to the organizer (whom they respected as an artist), they decide there's really only one way to pay their respects to Chatterbox...
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner:
    Virgil: Fuck you, copperhead! I'm the boss! You was nothin'! You was nothin' before me! Nothin'!
    Cleon: Open your eyes, motherfucker. You ain't nothin' but ashes. (sets the screaming Virgil aflame)
  • Pummeling the Corpse: Your teammates actually have unique dialog if you continue to attack an opponent after knocking them out.
  • Remixed Level: Several areas of Coney Island. A tutorial level takes place in Virgil's stronghold in East Coney. The Warriors return in "Destroyed", and this time, it's Virgil's turn to go on the defensive. Interestingly, the Destroyers still haven't gotten around to removing your graffiti.
  • Rhymes on a Dime:
    • An occasional quirk of some of the black characters. The bouncer at the Red Devil takes it Up to Eleven.
    "You gonna need some cutters to find yo' brothas!"
  • Ring Out: One of the Rumble modes is purely this; throw everyone off the rooftop and the last man standing is the winner.
  • Ring-Out Boss: Chatterbox will die instantly when struck by the fun-house's roller coaster. However, you only get points for whittling his health down normally, which is really tough.
  • Roof Hopping: The chase scene in Soho takes place on the rooftops of several buildings. Missing a jump is, suffice to say, instant death.
  • Rooftop Confrontation: Plenty. There is an entire Rumble Mode feature devoted to it: a melee battle where the last man left standing (that is, not splattered on the concrete below) wins.
  • Run or Die:
    • In "Roots", Cleon warns the player that he and Vermin won't stand a prayer against the Satan's Mothers. He advises that they stick to the corners. However, it's not too difficult the defeat the Mothers, should they spot you.
    • The final missions dump Swan and his allies deep in enemy territory. Your pursuers are, in order: The Turnbull ACs, the police, the Furies, and the Rogues.

  • Scary Black Man: Big Moe, the hulking boss of Harlem's Boppers. Except for Virgil, he's the hardest opponent in the game to beat.
  • Scoring Points: If you plan to unlock everything, then prepare to do a lot to score points. The first Flashback mission, "Roots", is especially notable on this, as you'll have to do a lot of object bashing, mugging and fighting before you even meet the Satan's Mothers if you even want to get close to the goal of 9,000 points.
  • Shame If Something Happened: The second Flashback mission, starring Swan and Cowboy, focuses on their making sure the stores in the area have a new gang they answer to and must pay protection money to. They do this by pretty much trashing the stores.
    • Fox gets a look at the Savage Huns' operation while trailing their accountant. He stops at various storefronts, badgering people for money, then moves on to the next storekeeper. When one girl refuses to pay, the accountant signals his goon squad to pummel the stand to bits.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Several bums are veterans down on their luck. An early sidequest involves scrounging up $100 for one poor veteran who was mugged for his train fare he'd saved up to go and see his dying former Sergeant. Birdie is implied to have been crippled in the Vietnam war as well.
  • Shrine to Self: Chatterbox's art gallery is crammed with paintings and sculptures that all depict himself in vulgar tributes to classic works of art - including a naked Chatterbox posed like the Roman love-goddess Venus.
  • Shout-Out:
    • One of the Moon Runners in the Pelham train yard is overheard talking about "that space movie." Given the game's time frame, he is probably referring to A New Hope. Humorously, he says, "Nothing they do could ever ruin that movie for me!"
    • In the video game, there's a bonus game you can play called Armies of the Night, which is a nod to the old days of beat-'em-up games. The game is based on Double Dragon and it mimics the opening scene of a gang punching a girl (Mercy) in the stomach and kidnapping her while you (Swan) have to fight through the whole city and every gang to get her back. If you happen to reach the end in 2-player mode, the players will be forced to fight each other to the death to see who takes the girl home, just like in Double Dragon. This feature might count as Present-Day Past, since side-scrolling beat-'em-ups wouldn't appear in video arcades until several years after the events depicted in The Warriors.
    • Four of the Rogues are named Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Tommy.
  • Silent Antagonist:
    • The entire Baseball Furies gang. Just like in the film, the Furies never speak other than making grunts of pain when attacked. Their leader also doesn't speak a word. Since the entire gang wields baseball bats, one can say their bats do the talking for them.
    • Ghost, the leader of the Savage Huns, is also known for never speaking.
  • Slobs Versus Snobs: Cochise, the youngest of the Warrior pledges (until Rembrandt comes along), hails from Harlem and seems a natural fit for the Boppers. Vermin says as much, but as his Indian headgear and tassel boots would indicate, Cochise isn't "down" with purple vests and zoot suits.
    "I gotta run with a solid outfit! I wanna run with the Warriors!"
    • Played with in regards to the rivalry between the Saracens and the Jones Street Boys. Both gangs hail from Bensonhurst and are bitter rivals in a constant struggle to be the dominant gang of the area. The Saracens is the more typical, street-wise gang of bad boys, much like most other gangs, whereas the Jones Street Boys is a gang composed of preppy rich kids who engage in gang activities just for kicks.
  • Smoke Out: Ghost does this constantly in the Armies of the Night mini-game.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance:
    • Snow and Ajax invade L.C.'s love nest and interrupt his liaison with a pretty girl. A brutal smackdown ensues as tender mood music plays on the stereo.
    • When in the hangout, the DJ in the radio will occasionally dedicate songs to certain gangs. At times the songs will make no sense in regards to the gang she dedicates them to, such as a soft, romantic song dedicated to the Turnbulls, or a hard, heavy rock song dedicated to the Boppers.
  • Speech Impediment: Chatterbox has a nasty stutter. At one point, Ajax gets sick of listening to him and says "Hey! Why don't you shut the f-f-f-fuck up, so we can finish this thing?"
  • Stationary Boss: Birdie and Luther.
  • Storming the Castle: Ash's death is the final straw for Cleon. He decides that the Warriors are heavy enough to conquer East Coney.
  • Suddenly Voiced: Similarly to the Baseball Furies, the Hi-Hats almost never speak, or even make a sound (except for very softly grunting when you punch them). But a few of them do vocalize at moments of great emotion, such as when Chatterbox is nearly killed by a load of bricks. Crackerjack (Chatterbox's second-in-command) screams "CHATTERBOX!" in a hilariously high-pitched Brooklyn accent, while another one of the mime-faced goons points up to the roof and yells "Time to DIE, Warriors!" As the Warriors get chased through the rooftops, one of the Hi-Hats can be heard shouting "After them, hurry!" in a voice so high-pitched and cartoony that it sounds like taken from a show for kindergarten children.
  • Sunglasses at Night: Several members of the Satan's Mothers wear them, including warlord Spider. Also seen with the Savage Huns' errand boy in Fox's initiation flashback, graffiti artist Scopes, and of course, Masai of the Riffs.
  • Supporting Protagonist: Cleon helms the gang for the majority of the game. We watch him form the Warriors, scout for talent, and build up their "rep" in order to join the Riffs' syndicate.
  • Tattooed Crook: Diego, The Brute for the Hurricanes.
  • Theme Naming: As you can probably tell from Cobb's moniker, the Furies are named after notable ball players. You can view their names while selecting them in Rumble Mode.
  • This Is Reality:
    • At certain points in the game, you can hear your enemies taunting you in the background by shouting: "This ain't no movie, Warriors!" Which is technically true: it's a video game.
    • During a riot in Riverside in the fourth level, a mentally deranged character is heard in the background going "I'm getting crazy visions of fire and mayhem...Wait, this shit's real! HAHAHAHAHA!"
  • Those Two Guys: Officers Harrison and Garrison. They appear on two missions, with just one scene per mission, but they are quite helpful in Cowboy and Cochise's mission to help the Saracens frame the Jones Street Boys.
  • Theme Naming: In Rumble Mode and Armies Of The Night, it's revealed that most of the Baseball Furies are named after baseball players. The Lizzies seem to either have Gender Blender Names or Unisex Names.
  • The Unfought: Sanchez is hunted down by the Warriors due to him owing them money. He taunts them at every turn and sends the Hurricanes after them. By the time you do reach Sanchez and corner him, he accidentally offs himself in a cutscene by falling off a roof.
  • Throwing the Distraction: There are almost always bottles and bricks strewn about hiding spots; your Warriors can use these to attract enemies or lead them astray. "Boys in Blue" opens with Cochise using a helpless skinhead as a thrown distraction.
  • Trap Is the Only Option: A graffiti contest held in Soho and sponsored by the Hi-Hats. Nope, nothing suspicious here. (Chatterbox uses the opportunity to accuse them of laying bombs on Hi-Hat turf. Nice.)
  • The Triads and the Tongs: The Savage Huns are connected with the Triads.
  • Two Shots from Behind the Bar: In the "Sharp Dressed Man" mission, the bartenders are sympathetic to the Boppers. They hurl an infinite supply of bottles at Cochise; worse, their bottles have laser accuracy and follow no arc.
  • Unexpectedly Realistic Gameplay: Taking on the cops head-on is inadvisable and a quick way to get you all beaten if you're not careful.
  • Unintentionally Unwinnable:
    • Taking too long on the final battle with Luther will result in your AI controlled team mates throwing all the available debris, meaning you can't use it yourself. Later ports fix this by having one of the bottles by the ruined boat respawn.
    • The boss fight against Birdie as well, as he can knock out your allies by shooting at them. if he knocks them all out, there is nobody to chuck bricks at him to get him to move into your line of sight for attacking him, making it impossible to defeat him.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: Attacking your own teammates too much will result in them beating you down hard. (Go ahead, try to pick a fight in the Warriors' own hideout, where you're surrounded by at least a dozen guys. You'll die right quick.)
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Of the Villain Cred type. Virgil commands a lot of respect, even from the female D.J. who refers to him as Cleon's "former mentor." This couldn't be further from the truth.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: "Man, I drank, like, twice as much as you! You don't see me spraying lasagna all over the street!"
  • Watch the Paint Job: While Sully hides behind a fence and smarms, Cleon casts an eye on his beloved car. He directs the Warriors to smash it to pieces.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Some members of the Warriors are not very strong at fighting but make up for it by excelling at other skills that require more finesse, like lock-picking (Rembrandt, Fox and Cowboy), stealing car radios (Vermin) and spray painting (Rembrandt).
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: Dying without any flash on you results in a game over no matter if any Warrior is left alive. This also happens in co-op mode if both players go down and it also happens if player 2 tries to advance to the next part of the level without player 1. That situation can also become Unwinnable if you can't get any flash to revive each other.
  • We Need a Distraction: In order to escape the subway, which is padlocked by the police, the Warriors toss one of the Turnbull AC's into the path of an oncoming train. The flashback mission "Roots" opens with Cleon stirring up trouble by blowing up police cars, harassing bums, and provoking a riot; after awhile, the cops finally have enough and recall their stakeout.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Cleon and Virgil founded the Destroyers together. Virgil became power-hungry and paranoid, rallying the troops against Cleon and sending his partner on a suicide mission. Cleon and Vermin survived, to Virgil's misfortune.