Follow TV Tropes


Website / Flame Warriors

Go To
The comic image for Diplomat.
A website that was devoted to describing the recurring characters one finds in regular flame wars on the internet, owned by artist Mike Reed. Many will find them very recognizable. The website can be found here.

This website provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Pervs creep on other forumers, usually in secret. They sometimes start trouble just to keep the poster they're attracted to talking to them.
  • Ambiguously Trained: It's unknown if Centurion actually has a military background.
  • Appeal to Authority:
    • Blowhards are constantly stating their credentials in their posts, even if they're completely irrelevant to the subject.
    • Centurions often lord their military backgrounds over the heads of other forumers.
  • Artsy Beret: Artiste is depicted as wearing one, to go with the rest of his pretentious personality.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Admin, of course, being the forum administrator and all. He is considered the most powerful Warrior because he is capable of banning those who get out of control.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: It's heavily recommended that net warriors be patient and kind to Rottweiler Puppy, since he "grows up" into the fierce Big Dog and will become their steadfast and formidable ally.
  • Berserk Button:
    • The Grenade is one for an entire forum. It represents a subject that always, without fail, invokes a massive backlash that makes a normally civil community devolve into a series of angry arguments.
    • Howlers HATE when certain subjects are brought up, and will dogpile the person who brought it up.
  • Basement-Dweller: The Lonely Guy is not only drawn as this, they're also described as someone who doesn't leave the house much and picks fights because they have nothing better to do.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Some warriors are characterized as usually being pleasant, but very effective at online arguments once they're provoked. These would include the Big Cat, Coffee Klatch, Kung-Fu Master and Jekyll And Hyde.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Coffee Klatch generally seems to prefer a friendly, chatty environment, but if war breaks out on the forums she'll "shed her benign facade and attack mired warriors without remorse."
  • Advertisement:
  • The Bully: Big Dog, natch. He doesn't hesitate to use his superior strength to ruthlessly and remorselessly intimidate and tear into other combatants, even those weaker than him. He's appropriately enough depicted as a Bully Bulldog.
  • Bully Bulldog: The Big Dog is depicted as a Funny Animal bulldog and is appropriately enough The Bully.
  • Cats Are Mean: Zigzagged with Big Cat; usually Big Cat is playful and good-natured (if a bit lazy), but will react with lightning speed and start a Curb-Stomp Battle with whoever provokes him enough.
  • Change the Uncomfortable Subject:
    • Artful Dodger's hat. When attacked, he uses a counterattack that changes the subject to a different topic.
    • Instead of making a frontal attack, Therapist attempts to shift the focus of the conflict to the combatants’ psychological motivations and problems, and avoid the subject of dispute.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander:
    • Bong, who types very random nonsensical stuff, thanks to being on drugs.
    • Loopies are complete kooks that run on Insane Troll Logic. And unlike Bong, they're sober.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: One of the defining traits of the Klaxon, who posts every conspiracy theory they come across with all seriousness, no matter how outlandish.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • Big Dog is noted for being relentless and savage in debate, no matter how weak his opponent is.
    • Palooka is constantly on the receiving end of these but either doesn't realize it or can't control his urge to keep arguing.
    • A proper Kung-Fu Master on the other hand is usually on the giving end of one, but only after somebody foolishly manages to provoke them into fighting.
    • Big Cat delivers one of these to someone who provokes him enough, and is noted to toy with his prey before delivering the killing blow.
    • Godzilla is capable of dishing out one to an entire forum, to the point where forum culture never recovers properly.
  • Damsel in Distress: This is Fragile Femme's schtick - everything distresses her and she needs stronger warriors to protect her.
  • Dirty Coward:
    • The Stealth uses all a manner of sockpuppet accounts and multiple emails in order to flame with little to no consequences.
    • Rat prefers to attack with private messages than out in the open, and if called out for betraying privacy will claim that it's Never My Fault, instead blaming his opponent.
  • Dominatrix: The artwork depicts Netiquette Nazi as one giving the 'treatment' to her computer.
  • The Dreaded: Godzilla is a troll so destructive that the forum culture never recovers and is always paranoid about his return.
  • Dude, Not Funny!:
    • Yuk Yuks like to share every joke they come across, no matter how old, lame, or inappropriate they are. They're so annoying, you can't even find it ironically funny.
    • Often a reaction to the Evil Clowns' jokes, though they try to be offensive on purpose.
  • Emo Teen: Acne predates the Emo trend by a decade, but he fits the stereotype. He's the kind of poster who frequently whines about their life, and is more often than not described as "a middle class teenager with an allowance, unlimited access to a computer and WAY too much time on his hands."
  • Everything Is Racist: Defines the Ethnix warrior, who uses his (supposedly) ethnic background to undermine his opponents and accuse them of being racist.
  • Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: Evil Clowns' jokes are always mean-spirited and insulting, and they love to humiliate their opponents with their "humor."
  • Fanboy: The aptly-named Fanboy is well, a fanboy with interests and knowledge in a single obsession. If said obsession is criticized, he immediately defends it with ferocious tenacity
  • The Fundamentalist: Deacon, an obnoxious religious zealot.
  • Geek: Propeller Head knows pretty much nearly anything about computers and is surprised that others don't. When provoked, he uses this knowledge to do really bad things to the offender's computer.
  • The Generic Guy: Lamers don't display any real defining personality traits to their posts, seldom provide keen insight to whatever discussions they participate in, and aren't obnoxious enough to warrant banning.
  • G.I.R.L.: The result of a male Impostor pretending to be a woman. Also, there's a pretty good chance that Strumpet is actually one of these.
  • Good Cannot Comprehend Evil: Bliss Ninnies cannot understand why people cannot get along, and often disrupt heated arguments with more innocent posts.
  • Good Is Dumb: Bliss Ninnies are nice people, but incredibly daft. They're blissfully unaware of why everyone just can't get along, and will sometimes interrupt flame wars with innocuous posts.
  • Grammar Nazi: The Grammarian will not hesitate to correct even the slightest mistakes in spelling and grammar.
  • Hate Sink: The Target is a poster who most everyone on the forum hates. Sometimes, they can be used as a pressure valve for the community to vent its pent-up rage on, so when it loses the old Target, it will very likely pick a new one.
  • Hollywood Atheist: Atheist is the "must mock and belittle believers, religion and theism at every opportunity" kind.
  • I Am Legion: Cyber Sisters are depicted as such - always acting in lock step with each other to amplify their arguments and smother opposition with numbers.
  • The Ingenue: Innocence Abused is described as a "digital ingenue." She simply can't deal with trolling and crudity, but has many flame warriors ready to leap to her defense. Fragile Femme would also seem to fit
  • Internet Counterattack: The Swarm is this, even providing the page image. Any offending message that reaches a Swarm nest will cause the whole swarm to attack the offender in a Zerg Rush.
  • Internet Jerk: Jerk is very happy to participate in electronic forums because "in cyberspace he is free to be himself... without the risk of getting a real-time punch in the mouth."
  • It Amused Me:
    • Enfant Provocateur's reason for stirring up trouble is... just because.
    • Evil Clowns get bored easy, and often interrupt serious discussions or humiliate other forumers for funsies.
  • It's All About Me: The aptly-named Ego regards forums as all about him, and will even provoke conflict so that he becomes the subject at hand.
  • Jekyll & Hyde: The very name of a specific warrior who can oftentimes switch from being nice, helpful, and rule-abiding to a completely unhinged jerk.
  • Jerkass: Some warriors, like the Big Dog and the aptly-named Jerk, are defined by how assholish they are.
  • Just Ignore It:
    • A common weakness among several Flame Warriors, most notably those who crave attention and those who want to get a response out of others. Ignoring them makes them very frustrated.
    • The Stone Deaf's strategy is to ignore any and all arguments that they don't like. This also makes him nearly invincible to other Flame Warrior attacks, save from getting ejected/banned.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Profundus Maximus claims to know everything there's to know about the subject at hand but as the discussion continues, it becomes obvious that his knowledge is shallow at best and he's just bluffing his way through.
  • Literal-Minded: Android's schtick is that he's very literal minded and doesn't irony, sarcasm, metaphors, etc... the example given is of Android responding to being called a 'pinhead' by measuring his head, finding that it is of standard size, and dismissing the insult as erroneous.
  • Manipulative Bastard:
    • Whisper warriors avoid open conflict if they can, preferring to send private messages to friends or sympathetic posters in order to rally support (or at least look like they're rallying support) for their side of the argument.
    • The Rat, who tries to pick fights over private messages instead of directly on the forum. When they think they're losing, they start posting the contents of their opponents' messages on the forum out of context, claiming that their opponent is harassing them.
    • Picador tries to provoke their opponents through carefully worded posts that only they would get angry at. They do this in hopes of their opponents starting a flame war and getting defeated by stronger warriors.
  • Martial Pacifist: Kung-Fu Masters are powerful warriors but they generally choose not to fight, even unfazed by mere provocations. Woe betide those who force one to fight, as they can crush almost any opponent with ease.
  • Master of Disguise:
    • Impostor, a Warrior who can change his internet persona on a whim, and tends to lie about who he is.
    • Net Rats are kids and pre-teens pretending to be adults.
  • Never Mess with Granny: The Toxic Granny is an elder poster who's just as aggressive on the keyboard as the younger warriors. Taken to a literal extreme, as being beaten by her is humiliating, but winning an argument against her gains no glory, meaning you really don't want to mess with her.
  • Nice Guy: Several.
    • The Eagle Scout is friendly and helpful (especially towards newbies), eager to keep the discussion meaningful and civil, and not easily provoked by petty arguments. He will also do his best to prevent any flame wars once a hot-button topic is introduced, described here as him Jumping on a Grenade to save the forum.
    • Jekyll and Hyde is usually a nice guy, but characterized by his habit of occasionally coming completely uncorked.
    • Bliss Ninnie isn't very smart and doesn't seem to understand the concept of flame wars in general, but at least she's nice.
  • No Indoor Voice: ALL CAPS appears to lack one, based on their habit of communicating with the caps lock constantly on.
  • No-Sell:
    • The debating tactic of Ferrous Craneous, who no matter how badly he loses a debate and how thoroughly his arguments are destroyed, will just keep making the same arguments over and over again.
    • Stone Deaf's (before he was removed and replaced by Ferrous Craneous) tactic is to completely ignore and refuse to acknowledge any arguments he doesn't like. The only "attack" that can affect him is Admin's ability to eject him from the forum.
  • No Sense of Humor: Yuk Yuks and Evil Clowns regularly accuse their opponents of this, or use the Parody Retcon.
  • Not So Harmless:
    • Propeller Heads are often "inarticulate and clumsy" in a debate, but they have the technical know-how to mess with your computer.
    • Rottweiler Puppy starts out marginally articulate and unsteady in his rather playful attacks. He grows up into the much more fearsome Big Dog.
  • Old Shame: The Archivist is described (in-universe) as an "especially effective and fearsome" warrior who specializes in saving older posts and later using them to discredit other warriors.
  • One-Hit Kill: Admin's ability to eject users from the forum entirely is portrayed as such when it comes to flame wars.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Internet forum-style— Godzilla has the ability to crush an entire forum when he strikes, and Nothing Is the Same Anymore after that.
  • The Philosopher:
    • Philosopher, naturally.
    • Profundus Maximus like to think they're one and tries to pretend they are, but stronger warriors recognize that they're bluffing.
  • Professional Butt-Kisser: The Sycophant is much more interested in sucking up to stronger warriors than actually doing battle. However, his constantly shifting loyalties make him a weak and unreliable ally.
  • Rebel Leader: The Flame Warrior of the same name is this to Internet forums, as he disrupts the forum's established hierarchy during a debate by rallying other users to his side. With enough supporters, a Rebel Leader can beat the Cyber Sisters at their own game, smother even the most influential members of the forum (identified here as the Royals), or even defy an Admin by turning everyone against him (if only temporarily).
  • The Rival: This defines the Duelists, a pair of posters who absolutely loathe each other and seek every opportunity to argue and fight without end. Even after they're banned, it's noted that they will seek each other out on another forum to continue their fight.
  • Sarcasm-Blind: Android will point out logical inconsistencies of other warriors. As such, irony and sarcasm are totally lost on him since he will take them the literal way before dismissing them as erroneous.
  • Satellite Character: Me-Too is a warrior who only ever acts alongside a Big Dog because they're too weak and insecure to act alone. It doesn't even have its own page on the roster.
  • Single-Issue Wonk: The Issues warrior is a kind of poster who will always talk about a specific issue they have with...whatever, regardless of what relevance it has to the topic at hand.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Compost flings expletives and vulgarities to keep his opponent at bay. Is noted for being a rather weak warrior who quickly gains the attention of Nanny or Admin and is quickly banned from it.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Here, God is this - he's depicted as a developer, programmer, or some other kind of big name who was once very influential but who's time has passed, yet he shows up every so often to suggest that people should be giving him more credit and respect.
  • The Smart Guy: Outside the five man band dynamic, Philosopher's hallmark is his intelligence. His fighting style, as written on the site, is to 'smother his opponent with his ponderous and lengthy cogitations.'
  • The Spock: Android, who's emotionless and only notes illogic in other flame warriors' arguments.
  • Stock Phrases / Stock Quotes: Pithy Phrase's "weapons" of choice in any discussion. This also means he'll never add anything original to the discussion, however.
  • The Stoner: Bong is high on drugs, causing his posts to be nonsensical and filled with typos.
  • Straw Feminist: Issues was depicted as this - an angry woman in military gear with grenades. The entry was also written in feminine prose as well. However, Issues doesn't necessarily have to be a feminist.
  • Strawman Political: Tons to represent various posters of particularly extreme political backgrounds. Troglodytes are ultra-conservative bigots, Weenies are ultra-sensitive liberals, Capitalistas are libertarians who won't stop harping on the merits of the free enterprise system, Pinkos are Dirty Communists, and Idealogues define themselves entirely by their set ideals and won't accept a difference in opinion.
  • Techno Wizard: Propeller Heads are extremely knowledgeable with computers and it is thus not a good idea to engage them in combat, for they can easily screw over a warrior's computer or digitally mess with them.
  • Terse Talker: Grunters are defined by how they respond to messages with only a single word or a short phrase.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Rottweiler Puppy is clumsy, not too articulate, and his attacks are unsteady and playful. He eventually "grows up" into the much more formidable Big Dog.
  • Treants: Ent is depicted as, well, an Ent from The Lord of the Rings.
  • Troll: Troller is the most obvious one by its name, but other warriors like the Evil Clown and Enfant Provocateur also qualify in how they say things just to get on people's nerves.
  • Typhoid Mary: A specific warrior that's unknowingly infected with viruses and Trojans, and who just as unknowingly spreads it around on the forums they visit.
  • Unacceptable Targets: Invoked. Ents are longstanding, venerated, and not very active anymore, but engaging them is sure to earn the enmity of a lot of other warriors.
  • The Unintelligible:
    • Garble's posts are completely unreadable, no matter how serious they're being because...well, they just seem to suck at typing!
    • Bong's posts are usually unreadable, since they're high while posting.
    • Loopy's posts are unreadable largely thanks to them being just plain weird.
    • Patois' posts are hard to read thanks to their native language being different from the one they're posting on.
  • Unperson: Mike Reed replaced Stone Deaf with Ferrous Craneous, and scrubbed all mention of Stone Deaf from the website when he did.
  • The Watcher: The Lurker seldom, if ever, posts, but he's always there, silently reading the discussion.
  • Weird Aside: Quite a number of Flame Warriors tend to post something completely unrelated to the subject at hand, be it on purpose or accidentally.
  • You No Take Candle: Patois, as a result of his tenuous grasp on the English language.
  • Zerg Rush: The Swarm's method of attack. One offending message sets off the entire swarm which will bring down even the strongest warriors due to attrition.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: