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Video Game / Three Dirty Dwarves

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Three Dirty Dwarves is a Beat 'em Up game released for the Sega Saturn and PC in 1996. It was published by SegaSoft and developed by Appaloosa Interactive. The lead animator for the cartoon cutscenes was Szórády Csaba, formerly of Pannonia Film Studio.

The actual plot of the game focuses on four genetically-altered children, Laura, Gregory, Billy, and Kyle, who are being held captive in a military genetics lab at WST (Weapons Systems Technology). Colonel Briggs, the Drill Sergeant Nasty in charge of the base, wants them to use their genius to create super soldiers. Instead, they've devised a plan of escape using a tabletop game they've created by combining Einstein's theory of relativity, superstring theory, and the laws of chance, creating a world within the game.

In it, their avatars, three Dwarves named Greg, Tatonic and Corthag, battle in Middle Earth to reach an inter-dimensional gateway that would send them to this world so they can save the kids. Briggs decides to have the kids separated from each other and the game, but not before they summon a portal in the game that sends its three heroes to Earth. Unfortunately, their enemies use the same portal and follow them to earth. The dwarves catch fire in Earth's orbit and end up in a sporting goods shop, where they believe they've been gifted with the weapons and armor they need to fend off their enemies and save the children from the genetics lab.

Three Dirty Dwarves game contains examples of:

  • 2½D: "The Gymhouse", "House of Fire", and "Man of a Thousand Swords" levels.
  • Abnormal Ammo:
    • Baseballs and bowling balls and pins.
    • Some enemies throw forks at you.
  • Alliterative Name: The Naked Ninjas.
  • Animate Inanimate Object:
    • The trash can and newspaper enemies.
    • The Gymhouse, which is a freaking boss fight.
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse: When he's cornered, Briggs tries to convince the dwarves to join him instead, with incentives such as weapons, vacation, and a "condo" that's a castle. It almost works.
  • Batter Up!: Greg's main weapon is a baseball bat, and uses baseballs as a projectile weapon.
  • Big Applesauce: The game takes place in a post-apocalyptic Bronx.
  • Big Bad: Colonel Briggs is the man in charge of the Weapons Systems Technology lab and the one holding the genetically-altered children captive to have them create super soldiers, while the titular Dwarves must rescue the children.
  • Big Ball of Violence: In the intro, when the orcs attack. It's also one of the special moves in-game.
  • Blood Knight: All three of the dwarves.
  • Bloodless Carnage: At least, outside of the intro.
  • Enfant Terrible: The genetically-altered ax-wielding babies in the base.
  • Evil Lawyer Joke: Apparently, lawyers are America's secret weapon.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: The dwarves are sent from a Standard Fantasy Setting to a sporting goods shop in the post-apocalyptic Bronx, thinking they've been gifted with the weapons and armor they need to save the children.
  • Get A Hold Of Yourself Man:
    • Said in the intro by Laura when Briggs is about to separate them.
    • How healing works. A single hit from an enemy will stun a dwarf indefinitely, but a hit from another dwarf returns them to normal.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: The intro shows an orc being sliced in half.
  • Made of Explodium: Enemies explode when you kill them.
  • Mine Cart Madness: The Trolley Ride level.
  • Monochromatic Eyes: Greg has them in the animated cutscenes and the Japanese cover.
  • Oh, Crap!: In the intro, once the dwarves reach the gate they've been looking for, none of them seem eager to go in. Once they see a legion of orcs storm in behind them, they quickly change their minds.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder:
    • Each of the dwarves are knocked out with one hit, but their buddies can knock them back on their feet again.
    • Averted in Hard mode: you start each level with a supply of white skulls, and you lose one every time a dwarf is hit. Lose all the skulls, and you'll have to restart the level even if you have a dwarf left.
  • Punny Name: Pit Bully, a boss who attacks with vicious dogs.
  • Rocketless Reentry: How the dwarves end up on earth. They catch on fire as they enter its orbit, necessitating a change in clothes.