Who put this axe here?! Is this a joke?
"Do not play Pokémon GO
—Pokemon GO startup message
Simply put: stupidity that occurs from characters in the game, whether it's Artificial Stupidity, scripted or otherwise. For player instances of potential stupidity, see Yet Another Stupid Death.
7 Days a Skeptic:
- Something has been killing off the members of a starship. The three surviving crew members have just been attacked by the revived corpse of the captain, the first to die. They defeated it, but they're not sure whatever animated it is really dead. Then they realize they can flee the ship on the escape pods... after a good night's rest. In separate rooms. (Not to mention the fact that the escape pods are restricted access!)
- The whole ship was built with massive and illogical design flaws, explicitly with the assumption that nothing would go wrong. (Any engineer in any field can attest how stupid that is.) In addition, the crew are either incompetent or unwilling to do their job — the engineer routinely sends the counselor to fix things while he hides in the mess hall. Yahtzee has admitted that many things were left this way because the plot wouldn't work otherwise.
- If you think that's bad, they didn't choose to have a good night's rest before they used the escape pods. That's how long it took the automated systems to prepare the pods to be used. Either the people who designed the ship were really confident that nothing would go wrong, or they expected the escape pods to be used more like Save Scumming than actual emergency measures.
- In Age of Empires III: The War Chief's campaign Sheriff Billy Holme, cornered by his ex-partner Chayton (Holme had a Face–Heel Turn) chooses to back into a cliff face surrounded by TNT. After talking for a bit, Holme attempts a Quick Draw shot on Chayton, forgetting that A) his gun was at his back while Chayton had his at his side and B) Native Tribes have a quick reaction time and Chayton was half Sioux. You can guess how it ends.
- In Anachronox, the entire population of Democratus suffer this chronically. As the name suggests, it's a planet where they vote on everything. Because of this, the place is paralysed with indecision and it's full of unimaginative, don't-rock-the-boat middle-management types who get nothing done. At one point Democratus is attacked by a Horde of Alien Locusts and one of the High Council seriously suggests they have no evidence that the missiles being launched at them are even destructive in nature, leading to the exasperated Only Sane Man crying "What exactly do you think is inside those warheads? Gift baskets!?" An alien ambassador comments that he gives the planet six months before it self-destructs.
- In Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura, Fantastic Racism is pretty common, especially against Half-Orcs. However, racism against Half-Ogres is quite rare, due to the fact that the few people who openly pick on such big and strong individuals usually wind up dead.
- Skie Silvershield in the first game, especially when it comes to her Bastard Boyfriend Eldoth.
- Speaking of Eldoth, he can potentially be killed by Shar-Teel if they are kept in the same party. Given the massive difference in fighting ability between Shar-Teel (an incredibly physically strong shieldmaiden-esque warrior woman) and him (a Quirky Bard), it could be considered death by failure to keep his mouth shut.
- In his epilogue for the final game, Edwin receives a Fate Worse than Death variant where he's dumb enough to try and pick a Wizard Duel with Elminster. Elminster slaps him down and turns him into Edwina, as well as implicitly stripping Edwina of her magic in the process.
- The AI in the first game was very limited and frequently made enemies do near suicidal things. The second game was moderately better about it, but the AI was still so poor in general that there are several Game Mods out there that provide improved AI scripts. Some of these, like Tactics or Sword Coast Stratagems, can actually make the game Nintendo Hard...
Battleborn: The wolf sentry bot in the mission "The Void's Edge" is tasked with destroying a Varelsi portal by leaping into it and detonating a huge pack of explosives. Because this will obviously kill him, Kleese programmed him to be totally oblivious to the suicidal outcome of the mission, literally making him too dumb to live. When Kleese explains what the wolf sentry has to do, the sentry bot replies "Awesome, that sounds both fun and safe."
- A video game version of the BattleTech and its attendant Mechwarrior roleplaying game, Crescent Hawk's Inception, allows the character to stage a jailbreak using a Humongous Mecha. The guards get this, first for storing said 'Mech on the prison grounds without some kind of security, allowing the player to hightail it to a 'Mech and steal it to make the escape. However, this can get flipped around, since the player can go back to the jail after the break...which means they would have to go in on foot, without the benefit of the 'Mech as a trump card. Cue guards swarming and executing the player.
- In Bejeweled 3, the butterfly jewels fly up towards the spider, even though they seem to know it will eat them, leaving the player to save them by matching them with gems of the same colour.
- In Bendy and the Ink Machine, "Bendy" will kill everything that comes near him. Some of the lesser antagonists, such as the Butcher Gang, don't run away from him. They've even been seen running toward "Bendy" if Henry is in the same direction.
- Dr Suchong, who created the Big Daddies, was having trouble imprinting the Big Daddies on the Little Sisters. In an audio diary, it is shown that he got angry and slapped a Little Sister while a Big Daddy was in the room. You find his body drilled to his worktable.
- Or splicers in general. Let's see, one type of Big Daddy has a massive drill that can bore through one's stomach and the other has a rivet gun and proximity mines. A Wrench will definitely work.
- The first time you're shown a Big Daddy in action is a good demonstration of this. A Leadhead Splicer (who at least has a revolver) spots a Little Sister. Believing, despite what past experience has to have shown him, that she is alone, he attacks. You see this on the other side of a reinforced plate glass window; five seconds later, you can loot the splicer's corpse after he's thrown through said window.
- The splicers are excused from this as they are more along the lines of too insane to live because of drug abuse in contrast to Dr Suchong.
- People in Black & White. Too dumb, lazy, and apathetic to live, to be more precise.
- Fritz in Brain Dead 13 at times. For example, in the intro, when Fritz was gonna blow up Lance with a cannon, Lance tricks Fritz by shouting, "BOOM!" Fritz evilly laughs, but stops, and the screen cuts to Lance saying, "Hiya, pal." Fritz then screams as his eyes pop out of his head, then checks if the cannon fired, and gets blasted in the face. Fritz is invincible, however.
- They're technically not alive, but Champions of Norrath has a level where you must escort souls to freedom. They don't bother to stay behind you, they run into lava, and when they're attacked, they just stop and kneel, letting the enemies beat on them! What's worse, if all of them are killed, you have to restart the level. And there are several of these escort levels.
- Buster Badshot from Exidy's Arcade Game Cheyenne is implied to be this. He's supposedly a bounty hunter who goes after various gangs (with various "creative" names), but all he ever does is walk around the stage (or drive the stagecoach in one level) while the player has to protect him (and get the gangs). Indeed, even his last name alone seems to imply this.
- The people in the mall in Choice of Zombies. They have no quarantine or even medical examination period of any sort, they don't post lookouts, and they insist everyone store guns and ammo separately. In the middle of a Zombie Apocalypse. Unsurprisingly, it turns out someone was infected and turns, then infects their whole medical ward.
- Paragon City is actually nicknamed "The City of Heroes" in-universe, a fact that is well-known and well-publicized throughout the city and beyond. So the street thugs you meet at the lowest levels should know better by now than to draw their weapons and charge at the people in funny costumes. Even if they do know better, it doesn't stop them from trying, anyway.
- While it was a case of various AI-related issues piling up, special mention has to go for both Lady Jay and Fusionette; they used to have near-unlimited sight range, but their ranged powers were strangely short-ranged. They also didn't understand that you don't have to go chasing after someone that ran away. Which means that while the group running the mission is doing perfectly fine, they suddenly got "MISSION FAILED" because the character they were leading around decided to chase after one runner, directly into the path of three full-sized mob groups and then fight them all. This was fixed by toning down their aggro range, toning up their attack range, and sometimes just letting you beat the mission even after they're defeated.
- In Civilization, AI players that are losing against you may offer a peace treaty. The stupidity comes in when they will, with very few exceptions, accept nothing less than unconditional peace, even when they still have gold and resources to offer in tribute. Never mind that if you're kicking their teeth in hard enough that they feel the need to beg for peace, you probably have the forces needed to finish them off. A sensible person would probably offer everything he has in an attempt to stave off his defeat, but not the AI, oh no!
- The AI is attempting Refuge in Audacity. It's up to you to decide whether it's played straight or subverted.
Clive Barker's Undying:
- Jeremiah. Let's go over his plans again: You are the weakest of the five undead siblings that no mortal weapon can kill for real. You trick the hero into finding a supernatural weapon that actually can and into using said weapon for killing your stronger siblings, their armies of demonic mooks, and extremely powerful evil wizards. So far so good. Very smart of and good for you. Revealing everything to and mocking/threatening said hero while you have no demonic armies or powers to hurt him in any way? Not so much.
- Possibly justified by the fact that Jeremiah could have known that he had no chance again Patrick, and therefore could have decided (if not from the very start) to just free the undying king for the lolz. To achieve that, however, it was necessary to lure Patrick into killing him with the scythe, because Jeremiah's soul was the last remaining seal between the king and freedom. It's generally known, however, that the game went into a kind of Development Hell in its final phases, so there are quite a few plot holes in the story.
- There are still servants working at the Covenant Manor, despite the fact that many have died from demonic beasts. One guy finally decides he's had enough and leaves, only to get killed at the front gate.
- Hey guys, you know what sounds like fun? Let's read a ritual out of this weird occult book near some creepy standing stones. Nothing could possibly go wrong!
- Pretty much everyone in Command & Conquer Red Alert 2 and 3 falls under this. In Red Alert 2, the Soviets decide to give the character Yuri Mind Control powers, and then not do anything to keep him from running amok with them, which he does. Using his powers, he gains a private army, and creates some mind control machines that he plans to use to control the whole planet, and nobody pays any attention to them. Later, he radios the allied intelligence lieutenant and mind controls her, but doesn't use any secure or scrambled lines, leading to his call being traced back to his main base. In Red Alert 3, the Soviets go back in time to kill Einstein to keep him from developing the technology that allowed the Allies to beat them (again). That works, but in the new time-line, Japan is turned into a global superpower called the Empire of the Rising Sun, which the Soviets pay no attention to while they are trying to invade Europe, which causes them to get invaded. The Allies display similar incompetence when it turns out that there was a city-destroying laser weapon that could hit targets across the globe in Mt. Rushmore, which they could have used to easily defeat the Soviets, but the American President only decides to use it on the Soviets when they and the Allies have to team-up against the Empire. Granted, there is some speculation that the president was really a robot set-up by the Empire (he turns out to be in the Empire campaign, but there are no hints in the others). The Allies later fail to pick up that the Soviets turned on them until a Soviet scientist defects to them. They apparently didn't learn their lesson in the expansion, because in the Allied campaign they decide to trust the Empire's crown prince Tatsu to help them deal with some insurgents, and then not anticipate him turning on them. At the end of the Soviet campaign, the Soviets note that the Allies are starting to make the mistake of trusting them again after the Soviets defeat an evil mega-corporation.
- No hints? Every time Ackerman stepped in, it was to keep the Allies and Soviets fighting, which would have made them easier targets for the Empire. Additionally, he is introduced in the Soviet campaign quintupling the American war fund right after the Empire is driven from Russia. Gotta read between the lines.
Tiberium Wars also has some nominees in the form of the grunt soldiers. Even after being ordered to retreat, as soon as they take any fire, they'll charge directly at the thing that's attacking them. And again, and again. Even if they're one squad of riflemen up against a Zerg Rush of tanks. It gets to the point that you might as well just write them off the second they get close to the enemy.
- It is, however, implied in the case of Yuri that for all his intelligence and psychic capability, Yuri himself does not have a very solid grasp of military tactics. He mostly just relies on sheer psychic power to overcome his foes.
- Used as humorous Lampshade Hanging in Conquests of the Longbow: in one of the final segments, the player (as Robin Hood) has to sneak into a tower to rescue a captive knight. If the player decides to talk to the enemies he's sneaking past, Robin will say "Excuse me, could you lend me a hand? You see, I'm nearly safe, but I thought I'd do something truly foolish instead and get myself killed." The enemies gladly oblige.
- Jin in Dead Island. It's hard to interpret her actions as anything less than Driven to Suicide. She starts by hijacking the truck and threatening abandonment unless you help everyone, which results in a number of survivors being killed. She then runs off to help prisoners at the police station, which gets a survivor at the church killed before she is gang raped. Then on the maximum security prison, she doesn't want to be there, which is fair enough, but Yerema points out her mental state and when confronted by Ryder White at gunpoint, she angers him about trying to kill everyone, before releasing his infected wife, who promptly attacks him. Ryder reacts by shooting Jin, which at this stage is clearly Suicide by Cop.
- She also insists on going alone to (re)kill her zombified father (for sentimental reasons, as he is locked away and not a threat). Despite having no combat experience, she goes back to his workshop unaccompanied and releases him. She actually manages to shoot and kill him with no problem, but this could have gone really badly and she gained nothing by doing it.
- Some characters in the Dangan Ronpa series can be dumber than others, but the victim for the first trial, Sayaka Maizono, definitely qualifies for this. Her plan to switch rooms with Naegi, lure a third student into that room, murder them, and let Naegi take the blame is fairly good. However, she chose for her target Leon Kuwata. The best high school baseball player in Japan, possibly the world. In other words, a high school girl known primarily for being a teen idol deliberately chose to target someone famous for their skill at a physically demanding sport when she had over a dozen people to choose from and most of them would be far weaker than Leon.
- In the first two games, even after all the evidence has been examined and the killer has been identified, the students will still vote the Player Character as the killer if they ran out of influence while attempting to sum up the events of the murder in the Closing Argument, resulting in all students except the killer being executed. Fortunately, this became an averted trope in New Danganronpa V3.
- Lindsay in Dead Rising. Could have avoided the plot if she hadn't opened the mall's front door, which a horde of zombies is clawing at right now, in order to let her precious little poochy in. The dog is clearly also a zombie. (The glowing red eyes are a dead giveaway.) The devteam clearly knew what people would think of her, though, and in the bonus Infinity Mode, where food-hoarding survivors are trying to kill you just as hard as the zombies, she dies as soon as you see her.
Dead Rising 2: A nameless mercenary mook on a motorbike sees Chuck Greene pick up a long, thin metal bar and crouch around the side of a stack of shelves. Instead of driving into sight of Chuck from a safe distance, he guns his bike right alongside the shelves, and is promptly speared.
- Truly, many AI characters are Too Dumb to Live in ways the programmers probably didn't intend. One example in Deus Ex: Miguel, the NSF member whom you may invite with you on your escape from the Majestic 12 prison. He doesn't believe in stealth and is liable to charge as soon as he sees an enemy, wielding only a combat knife. Keeping him alive to the exit without going ahead to kill all your enemies first is a very difficult feat.
- The entirety of UAC in DOOM (2016), bar maybe the members who are just flat-out cultists, fall into this for trying to use Hell as a power source. Special mention, though, goes to the people who decided it'd be a great idea to weaponize demons, and a very special mention to the people who decided to do this to the Cyberdemon, a twenty-foot Genius Bruiser that they had absolutely no way of controlling, going so far as to shove experimental energy cores and superpowered weapons into its body.
Dragon Age: Origins: Vaughn, the antagonist of the City Elf starter area, decides to kidnap a bunch of elven women from a wedding so he and his lads can have a "party". Somehow the player character walking into his room, literally coated in the blood of the people he paid to protect him, only convinces him to offer a bribe so s/he will go away and he can continue his planned rapes. And this is someone who has been smacked, bottled, or otherwise beaten in pretty much every scene he's in.
- Made perhaps more idiotic by the fact that his initial argument for why he shouldn't be gutted is fairly reasonable-if-gray (that he's the son of the Arl and his death will lead to the whole elven ghetto being leveled in retaliation). His "solution" being to make the player complicit in his crimes rather than cutting his losses for the day pretty much seals his fate.
- However, the player can actually accept his bribe and just leave. And just as they get back to the Alienage, soldiers come to arrest them. Turns out Vaughn just turned around and called the city guards. So the Elven PC can be too dumb to live him/herself. However, they still manage to get saved by Duncan regardless.
- In Origins, Arl Howe thinks it's a wonderful idea to taunt the Human Noble Warden about how he butchered your family.
- Lampshaded by the NPC Sergeant Kylon: "And people actually voluntarily attack you? Are they stupid?"
Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening: Bann Esmerelle and the other nobles conspiring to get rid of the Warden Commander if the Warden Commander is the Ferelden Grey Warden imported from Origins. They do this knowing fully that the Warden has both faced and claimed victory over including but not limited to: several dragons, an Archdemon, the Witch of the Wilds, a Pride Demon, a broodmother, and Tevinter slavers led by a powerful Magister. Not to mention he/she (with hardly any effort) dispatches bandit gangs on a regular basis, defeated a Fereldan war hero in one-on-one combat, stormed an Arl's estate and either killed several of the previously mentioned war hero's top knights, or escaped from the largest Fereldan prison while leaving dozens of corpses in his/her wake, and plows through countless numbers of darkspawn while coming out with hardly a scratch.
- For that matter, any enemy of a Fereldan Warden Commander in Awakening. Some of them can be excused by not knowing exactly who they're facing, but it's averted in one case, where revealing that you're The Commander of the Grey causes your enemies to panic. Most of the mooks run away, and one actually jumps off a cliff rather than face you.
- Ser Rylock manages a staggeringly impressive display in Anders's personal quest. She sets a trap for Anders and the Warden-Commander in the room after some high-quality mage robes and lyrium potions, using a force of only three Templars with no mage support, to attack four people, one of whom is not only the Hero of Ferelden and a stone-cold dragon-killing badass but may well be the Prince-Consort or Queen of Ferelden (and if not, there's a significant chance they're a hero of the dwarven people). It's especially hilarious since Anders is outside her jurisdiction by this point anyway by virtue of being a Grey Warden, meaning that she's trying to cause an international incident or piss off the King/Queen of Ferelden by attacking someone who chews up small armies and spits them out in the name of recapturing someone she can't legally hold.
- Lampshaded in Dragon Age II by Sergeant Joanna during the quest The Conspirators: "But this is the Hero of Ferelden. Same one that defeated Loghain, an Archdemon, the Mother, and no doubt more. Who do you think will win?"
Dragon Age II: By Act 3, the random gangs of thugs attacking your character at night definitely count. Bonus points when they do it in front of the huge statue built in your honor for saving the city from the Qunari, possibly by fighting the leader of their entire military in a one-on-one duel.
- The Mark of the Assassin DLC also gives us a pair of sterling examples. Duke Prosper Montfort and Baron Arlange.
- Duke Prosper dies mostly because he spends his last moments monologuing, while clinging to the edge of a cliff. Lampshaded by both Snarky!Hawke and Varric.
- Baron Arlange manages to, depending on player choices, be too dumb to live TWICE. The first time, he decides to try to kill your party after you've just killed a Wyvern, because he had paid to be the first person to kill one in the hunt. You can choose to spare him after kicking his ass. If you do, you'll end up facing him later, never mind how easily you curbstomped him last time you fought.
- The pack beasts from Dungeon Siege tend to fall victim to this trope — you have to protect them very carefully, or they have a tendency to wander into the line of fire. It gets worse in the expansion, Legends of Arranna, when you get pack beasts which have attacks — they continue to target and attack enemies even when they're hopelessly outclassed. You waste more resurrection spells on the pack beasts than anyone else...
Dwarf Fortress: "Being on fire sure makes you thirsty! I feel like a good beer." A dwarf that goes to get a beer will find himself in your booze stockpile, which, more often than not, will be full of wooden barrels full of things vastly more potent than beer...
- The Dwarves will also drop everything to collect the fallen items of the dead, even if it's next to an Elephant or on fire, or a Flaming Elephant, that's on Fire.
- Sometimes a mason will build a wall from the wrong direction, leaving him trapped. If the player doesn't notice in time, said mason dies of dehydration or starvation.
- Military dwarves will not run away from a monster they're chasing if restationed somewhere else or told to kill something else. In the case of titans or megabeasts, this results in Fun.
- Dear Urist McMiner, do not sleep in the aquifer. Sincerely, Save Scumming.
- Some dwarven soldiers seem to think that a goblin siege is the best time to go on break. Or get drunk.
The Elder Scrolls
- Series wide, this applies to any mortal who has ever thought it would be a good idea to betray a Daedric Prince. One example is the nameless female thief in the in-game book "Purrloined Shadows". She spies on a witch coven summoning the Daedric Prince Nocturnal. Why? To mug her of course! She is shown to be shocked by the nature of the mission she was given, and it turns out she was set up to get caught from the very beginning so when someone says "Hey let's rob a Daedric Prince while surrounded by her coven of worshipers" don't listen.
- Arniel Gane actually wants to replicate the event that caused the Dwemer to vanish from existence. Fortunately for the world, the shortcuts he takes in his experiment ensure that he is the only one to be killed by his stupidity. Better yet, his ghost becomes a very powerful combat summon. What makes it worse is his methods: He finally gets his hands on Keening, one of three tools necessary to perform the experiment he's trying to replicate. You'd think he'd be cautious and scientific with his use of it, right? Or at least have some actual plan for using it, especially considering he's working with a bare fraction of what he would actually need? Nope! Right after giving a lecture about how dangerous Keening is, he just starts swinging it in the general direction of his bargain-basement Heart of Lorkhan facsimile. Humanity is probably lucky he wasn't smart enough to hurt anyone besides himself.
- Also, Silus Vesuius wants to recreate Mehrunes' Razor, the artifact of Mehrunes Dagon, the Daedric Prince of Destruction, due to his belief that the Mythic Dawn of the previous game should be celebrated for nearly destroying the world. Not to mention that he thinks he will be rewarded for assembling the pieces of the Razor when he's making you do all the work. Even the nice Daedric Princes don't hand out prizes to layabouts; Mehrunes Dagon decides that Silus can at least assist in testing your dedication in handling his weapon.
- Astrid, the leader of Skyrim's Dark Brotherhood. She felt threatened by the authority of the Night Mother, who the Brotherhood believe to be the wife of their god, and sells out the Dragonborn out of spite in exchange for the Emperor's security force leaving them alone. The only problem was that she honestly expected Commander Maro to go through with the deal after the Brotherhood murdered the Emperor's cousin at her own wedding, killed Maro's son and framed him for treason, and made an attempt on the Emperor's life. Her naivete ends up getting half the chapter killed (including her husband), their Sanctuary put to the torch, and she herself executed by the Dragonborn while on the verge of death from her severe burns.
- Estormo is even more arrogant and foolish than your average Thalmor: provoking the Dragonborn after they have just killed a powerful Dragon Priest is a horrible idea. Provoking the Dragonborn after they just got a staff that drains magicka when you're a squishy Altmer mage who is both dependent on and especially vulnerable to magic is an even worse idea.
- In Ravenscar Hollow, you find a bandit mook who begs you to free him from the Hagravens who have captured him and put him in a cage. When you do, he turns around and tries to mug you. Obviously the fact that you very likely just killed three Hagravens single-handedly to get him out of there completely eluded him.
- Bandits in general would count, seeing as they're mostly decked out in furs and armed with poorly-made iron weapons and all completely eager to take on a mighty hero who has a plethora of powerful magical artifacts and a suit of armor made from the bones of the various dragons they've killed.
- Similarly, the mad necromancer in Rannvieg's Fast who smugly explains how he's going to kill you while slowly walking away with his back to you.
- And then there's that fire mage coven who decided that Sunderstone Gorge, a massive cavern filled with pools of flammable oil, would be a good place to hole up and train...
- "I shouldn't have hired those sellswords in the first place. Perhaps there's no need. This place is just a tomb, after all, and there are no obvious signs of habitation. It isn't as though the thousand-year dead will mind if I have a look around." Extract from Heddic's notes in Volunruud, found next to his corpse. Obviously, they did mind.
- Any dragon that tries to attack the College of Winterhold qualifies. Key word: "Tries".
- One Daedric quest involves you going along with someone to kill a giant. The person you're accompanying is a Small Name, Big Ego guy, who is hailed as brave and strong in his village for his previous fights against enemies. In reality, he's a Dirty Coward and tells you to go kill the giant... and after you do, he tries to kill you. Someone who just killed the giant he was afraid to fight, and probably did it relatively easily. And if you refuse to kill the giant for him, he charges it brainlessly and promptly gets killed for his trouble.
- A number of the random encounters you run into fall into this. There's the thief, for example, who will walk up and demand the Dragonborn's money. The Dragonborn, who may be wearing armor made from the hearts of Daedra (which he killed), a mask ripped from the face of a Dragon Priest (which he killed), and weapons made from the bones of dragons (which he killed). Worse still, the thief won't take no for an answer — he can't be persuaded to stand down, though some lucky thieves escape with their lives (but not their cash) after trying to mug their own Guildmaster.
- Animals such as wolves and even skeevers (which are large rats, but still no bigger than a Jack Russell terrier) attack on sight, even though you are larger. Real-life animals usually show more sense than to pick a fight with a large, potentially dangerous animal unless they have a pressing reason to; real-life wolves, for example, tend to avoid humans. But all the predators practically rush to be impaled on your sword.
- In the first game of the Exile/Avernum series, Erika Redmark is one of three immensely powerful archmages that was tossed into Exile for being on the wrong side of a political struggle in the Mage's Guild on the surface. Not being very genre savvy, the Emperor apparently never even paused to consider that pissing off one of the (if not the) most powerful Sorceresses in the world would have consequences. It's not like she could construct a portal back to the surface that leads directly to your throne room, right?
- Well, the Emperor's mages did give her a curse so powerful that even she could not repeal (and just that demanded the collective effort of hundreds of the Empire's best mages): what they did not expect was that once banished in Avernum, she would prove capable and cunning enough to change the local ecosystem to make the caves more habitable and build a whole civilization from the ground up as a tool to get her revenge: they knew she was the most powerful mage of the Empire, they just did not realize by what margin.
- Also, the First Expedition to explore the underworld. "They were arrogant. They were stupid. And they were slaughtered."
- In the Lost Chapters version of Fable, the evil option of the final choice is this. The options are either A. Throw an evil talking mask into the lava (Good) or B. put on the talking mask that tempts you with power and obviously just wants you to put it on so it can possess you (Evil).
- The player character himself/herself can qualify in Fallout 3. You're given the option to destroy everything your parents worked for and basically end all life again by poisoning the country's water supply, which would kill any human not born in a Vault. But since it's later revealed that you weren't born in the Vault, drinking the water post-game hurts your stats and eventually kills you.
- Too many to count in Fallout: New Vegas, but the thugs in Camp Searchlight stand out. This gang of looters are hanging out in a basement in a very radioactive town full of giant scorpions and ghouls, looking for radsuits. You know, the things you'd expect to bring before going in? It's a real wonder how they haven't turned into [feral] ghouls yet, seeing as the basement also is teeming with radiation and they're still in their non-radiation-shielding metal suits. If you bring them the wayward suit package, they'll agree to split the loot with you, if you help them loot the police station and the fire station. Note that the fire station is home to a gigantic queen scorpion, which you'll have to help take down. Once you've looted everything (because the thugs do nothing but loiter around), their leader tells you that he's going to kill you now, choosing the worst possible time to double cross you. At this point, you're probably pointing your powerful gun at his face already, who seriously didn't take account to the fact that you've probably already taken several levels in badass and clad in power armor or whatever protective suit you're wearing, and blow him away (and possibly a few of his men, if you have the action points for it) the moment he stopped talking. Winner takes all.
- There's a blink-and-you'll-miss-it Easter egg that counts under this trope. In Jacobstown, there are former resort bungalows which can be entered. One has a long-dead skeleton in an overturned chair next to a table where a card game clearly went awry. No points for guessing that the corpse on the floor was shot for being a cheater, as this trope first comes into play when the cheater's cards on the table are examined. Five kings. All of the same suit. It's entirely possible that they were shot for being terminally stupid, rather than just being dishonest.
- Caesar comes close to this. When you leave the Lucky 38, you get an audience with him and full forgiveness for crimes against the Legion, even if you've been using Legionaries for target practice. When you meet with him, he asks you to destroy a Securitron army in a bunker underneath the Fort. He has confiscated your Platinum Chip, which is the only way to enter the bunker, but gives it back and sends you in there fully armed and unsupervised. If you activate the army for your or Mr. House's use, Caesar will assume you destroyed it nonetheless. This might just be bad programming, but after destroying/activating the Securitron army, you can kill the guards in the weather station and return to the Fort fully armed.
- Some of Caesar's troops in his Fort fit this. If you play a female Courier, some will attempt to insult and belittle you. Even if you're walking around in power armor and wielding a plasma rifle. While they're wearing salvaged football gear and armed with a machete. In fact, seeing how the Legion treat women, a female Courier siding with them might qualify.
- President Kimball gives a speech maybe a half-mile from Caesar's Fort. This is slightly mitigated by the fact that he's doing it deliberately to show the Legion that he isn't afraid of them, and less-than-slightly aggravated by the fact that his security has so many holes, multiple Legion assassins manage to infiltrate the venue anyway.
- And how about that idiot who found a radiation suit and assumed it made him completely immune to radiation because he couldn't "feel" any radiation in highy radioactive areas? You typically can't feel radiation, only the after-effects, and by the time you are able to feel it, you're as good as dead several times over. Anyway, you can find this guy dead next to a radioactive dump site, and the note on his body shows he was preparing to drench himself in some goop that was so horrifically radioactive it would've been an extreme hazard to every living thing within a hundred feet. The Geckos inhabiting the area (and probably what killed him) undoubtedly did the Mojave a favour.
- Many of the "be weird" options in Fantasy Quest are fatal and pretty obviously so. Like, say, jumping off a cliff.
- The first task you have in Final Fantasy II is to search an Empire-occupied town for your missing fourth party member. Said town is filled with Imperial soldiers... and this comes just after the Hopeless Boss Fight against the Empire's knights at the beginning of the game. Needless to say, if you choose to talk to them at that point, you won't be talking for much longer.
- Leila accuses the party of this after she tricks them onto her ship with intent of robbing their possessions. Unfortunately for her, the three dupes she tricked are the Rebellion's top agents, more than a match for her pirate crew. And fortunately for her, they're willing to offer her a Heel–Face Turn.
- In Final Fantasy Tactics, Rapha (or Rafa in the original translation) becomes Too Dumb To Live in the Riovanes Castle Roof battle of Chapter 3, where Rapha charges blindly into Elmdore and his Assassins, even though she barely has any HP to withstand more than two hits and the Assassins can kill instantly. Considering the battle is lost if Rapha dies, and she starts out closer to the enemy than Ramza's party does, keeping her alive proves extremely frustrating for all but the fastest-moving parties. Her steadfast determination to get herself killed eventually prompted the "Rafa Syndrome" description for AI-controlled characters.
- It should be noted that this is actually a Justified Trope, as Rapha has recently become suicidally depressed.
- The Assassins themselves are actually Too Dumb to Live. The easiest way to beat the Riovanes Roof battle is to unequip one of your characters, lowering their HP. Rather than go for the instant win in Rafa, they will try to kill your naked character, leaving you ample time to win the battle.
Final Fantasy Tactics A2 has this with several missions that are an Escort Mission. Some of the units you have to protect are usually several levels lower than the enemy party, yet they will gleefully run up and try to attack them when their damage is equivalent to poking someone with a stick. And yes, doing this will invariably activate the enemy's counter attack skill, which is likely to kill them in one hit. So be sure to have your Paladins covering them at all times, kay?
- An egregious example are the Editor and the Head Chief, two Seeq that fight on your side and sometimes against you. By the time you'll be facing them your regular units will be around level 20 at the very least. The Editor is a level 10 Ranger who only knows Vanish. The Chief is a level 1 Berserker with NO skills. Even with mercenaries to even up the playing field, they will still gladly go toe to toe with enemies who can tear them apart with a thought.
- Some of the above examples are about characters taking on enemies far out of their league, but that's nothing compared to killing yourself directly. In Final Fantasy VI, check before sending Sabin, Gau, or Strago into a Colosseum fight. Each one may have learned a skill designed to hurt or heal others at the expense of his own life. No longer under control of the player, they may fail to realize that these moves make sense only in team battles, if ever. When fighting alone, it's instant defeat.
- In Final Fantasy VII, Aeris/Aerith's iconic death is the result of a string of idiocy from everybody involved except the villain himself. Aeris goes to the City of the Ancients, alone, for no reason which is apparent to the party at the time, without even explaining to anybody but Cloud where she's going or why and even her words to Cloud aren't straightforward, under the belief that somehow she can deal with Sephiroth by herself, in order to pray there to get the Holy Materia to stop the Black Materia. There's no reason she had to go there by herself, nor any indication she even knew how to activate the Holy Materia and was doing anything other than trying to get it to work on blind faith, it's only Sepiroth's own sadistic desire to screw with Cloud that keeps him from murdering her long before the party even show up. The party themselves don't help, since once they find Aeris they send Cloud across the pool to her, alone, despite the fact that he's already demonstrated that Sephiroth can mind control him. It's only the party snapping Cloud back to his senses at the last second that prevents him from killing Aeris himself.
- In Final Fantasy VIII, Rinoa. Hey! Let's go alone and sneak into the room of an all-powerful evil sorceress and ask her to put on a bracelet that will neutralize her power! Of course she will be gullible enough to accept jewelry from a complete stranger who's trespassing in her home and not, say, mind control you and put you in peril, forcing your friends to drop what they're doing and come rescue you — wait, nope, that's exactly what happens. Though to be fair, the realization of her mistakes and that she can't keep up with the rest of the professional soldiers in the party is a part of her character development and she becomes much less impulsive and foolish as the game progresses.
- Quistis gets an honorable mention for the same situation; she scolds Rinoa for not taking the situation seriously enough and for coming up with such a terrible plan in the first place, and is entirely right to do so... but then she feels guilty for being mean to Rinoa and insists on going back to apologize in the middle of the mission, forcing her team to go through a long, tedious dungeon full of dangerous monsters instead of actually solving the problem at hand.
Final Fantasy XII:
- The early villain Judge Ghis: Upon receiving a very important and very powerful piece of rock, one that he knows kingdoms were conquered and vast resources spent to acquire, he decides to find out what it does. By hooking it up to his giant airship's power supply. The said MacGuffin turns out to be a magic-absorbing stone. A magic-absorbing stone being inserted into the power supply of an airship powered by magic stones. This is only minutes after Larsa's weaker, but still magic-absorbing stone eats a magic attack intended to kill the entire party, right in front of Ghis. And he did this in mid flight, for some reason.
- Larsa pretty soundly averts this very trope. Though it could probably be chalked up to hopeful youth or brotherly love, Larsa seems the only person in the entire plot that doesn't seem to catch on that his elder brother Vayne is a half a peg up from a puppy-raping sociopath. Despite this, not only does Larsa survive, but he winds up being the only truly, purely good person in the story.
Fire Emblem in general can be really bad about this. Almost any game in the series will have at least one map where a green (NPC) character will attempt to fight his/her way through the entire enemy army and die, or a recruitable enemy will rush your party and get slaughtered by your counterattacks. The only ways to end the Artificial Stupidity is to either have your army haul ass and recruit the character as quickly as possible, or rescue the character until no enemies are present.
- Astrid in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance when you first meet her. Despite being an archer and having barely any Speed, Defense, or HP, she rushes straight towards the enemy and will usually be killed on the first turn if Ike doesn't get to her, which requires a great deal of shoving from the other party members.
- In Awakening, the villager NPC's in one mission are completely unarmed and yet will still rush towards the enemy and get themselves killed as a result, even if you just wasted a Rescue staff trying to pull them out of danger in the first place!
- The entire Armacham research team in charge of Project Perseus aside from F.E.A.R. aside from Chuck Habegger, Marshall Disler, and Harlan Wade. When Paxton Fettel, the psychic commander that was born and raised to control an army of mindless meat puppet soldiers, was 10 years old, Alma Wade connected to his mind in what was called a "synchronicity event," and whatever happened was apparently catastrophic. At the time of the first game, Fettel is an adult and fully in charge of the clone army, and Chuck Habegger starts seeing evidence that another synchronicity event is coming. Everyone except Disler and Harlan Wade ignore his warnings, and when they take his side, they are also ignored, until finally the synchronicity event occurs and hundreds of Armacham employees are slaughtered in the ensuing chaos.
Five Nights at Freddy's:
- The protagonist of the first game keeps coming back to the pizzeria filled with dangerous animatronics for some crazy reason. He even turns the killer animatronics to their most dangerous levels on Night Seven!note Though to be fair, he can also tone down their levels. Either Mike Schmidt has a death wish, or he's just that confident in his abilities.
Five Nights at Freddy's 2 has Jeremy Fitzgerald, who also keeps coming back, despite him having to deal with even more animatronics than Mike! Though he at least doesn't come in on Night 7... where Fritz Smith takes his place, and he can change the animatronics' threat level up to its maximum if he so desires (he even gets fired after one night, dumbfounding even the management). This also makes Jeremy look dumber, seeing how he never once got the idea to do that!
Five Nights at Freddy's 3 has the most egregious example with its unnamed protagonist. While Mike, Jeremy, and Fritz were surrounded by animatronics with no real safe way to an exit (thus effectively trapping them in the building), not only does this one have to deal with just one animatronic, but they have an exit right next to them, meaning that they could leave the building at any time! And they still come back every night!
Five Nights at Freddy's: Sister Location even just blatantly lampshades it. Twice. First Baby asks out loud what kind of person would willingly return to such a place. And later, the AI voice will complement that one of the traits they enjoy in a worker is the absence of a survival instinct. Of course, if the player actually had any survival instinct, he wouldn't have listened to Baby's instructions to the scooping room and been disemboweled.
FTL: Faster Than Light occasionally has Auto-Scout ships with no shields. There are also asteroid field environments where asteroids will periodically pelt both ships, weakening their shields (if any) and damaging their hulls if they run out of shield. Shieldless Auto-Scout ships can occasionally be found in asteroid fields. Should this incident happen, you can win without firing a single shot at all.
- Even worse, it's possible for scouts to be equipped with only beam weapons, which any ship equipped with a shield can No-Sell. The only ships without shields are the Zoltan Cruiser B (fixable for the low price of 100 scrap), the Stealth Cruiser (which the enemy would have no way of knowing exist), and other auto-ships.
- In Geneforge 3, it is not a good idea to visit a faction you've been working against, but a moment that takes the cake is a dialog option where after stealing a can of Phlebotinum from a Shaper's warehouse and handing it over to La Résistance, you go back to one of the Shaper's high chiefs and confess your crime. Note: The Shaper we're talking about is not only unbeatable for the level you're supposed to be by then, but is also commanding a squad of the toughest creatures in the game. Press X to Die indeed.
- And in the 5th game, every ending except one has you join a faction, where the first order of business will be to remove the control tool implanted in your chest. Afterwards, you can decide to pay Shaper Rawal, the one who put it in there in the first place, a leisurely visit. Yes, he will notice the lack of a certain something. No, he will not be happy.
- Most of the Mooks in one of the levels of The Getaway. Instead of trying to escape a ship that has a bomb on it, a major gunfight ensues and they start killing each other.
Frank Carter: "Half the waterfront's about to go up and you're STILL arguing!"
- In The Godfather: The Game, you will encounter citizens who run in the same direction as your car and throw themselves in its path. Almost all of the shopkeepers and racket bosses may qualify — if you push them too far, they will fight back, despite your proving to them that you won't flinch from beating the crap out of them or shooting them or others. It's almost as if they know they're indispensable and that you'll be worse off for killing them.
- According to the aforementioned citizens, the best solutions for when two gangsters are having a shootout are to a) run right between the gangsters, b) simply keep walking between the gangsters; maybe they'll mi—BANG, or c) if they're already in the middle, just stand with their arms up and go "AAAAHHH!"
- Played for Laughs in God Hand. In one cutscene, Gene punches two Mooks through a window into becoming A Twinkle in the Sky. When a third is about to attack, Gene gestures to him to stand in front of the same window. Guess what...
- In the Grand Theft Auto series:
A car is driving close to the sidewalk at high speeds; do you:
A. Run or dive in the opposite direction of the car. "I'm not going to risk it!"
B. Not do anything. "It doesn't look like the car is going to come close enough to hit me."
C. Strategically dive into its path, making sure your head lines up perfectly with the front tire. "Ha! This close call should teach you a lesson about driving reckle--"
If you answered C, congratulations! You are qualified to be a civilian in the GTA universe.
- A possible rationale for this behaviour comes from one of the game's fake radio ads, for a legal firm that will "even teach you how to throw yourself in front of a bus and pretend to be injured" with the intention of then suing the driver.
- Many of the nonplayable characters in Grand Theft Auto 2 seem to qualify, from fellow carjackers who drive into burning cars that are already on the verge of exploding, to gang members who side with the player character no matter how many members of their gang you killed, so long as you have killed a higher number of people from a gang they hate. Arguably the player character too, depending on how you play the game.
- Lance Vance from Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. To put it shortly, anyone who's stupid enough to betray their former partner out of spite, especially one who got the nickname "The Harwood Butcher" for a reason, is officially just asking to get iced.
- In a Newgrounds flash game called Gretel and Hansel, Hansel (the older brother and leader in the original fairytale) is very, very, very mentally challenged. He watches his little sister burn to death and doesn't seem fazed when she dies horribly in front of him in part 2. Speaking of part 2: Instead of saving his sister from the pit she fell into, he chases after a fairy and leaves Gretel to deal with a tree monster. When Gretel needs saving a second time, he shoves the fairy who's willing to help into his mouth, cuts that same fairy in half with scissors, and even swallows those scissors. He then stands on a cliff's edge tip-toed. No wonder Gretel is our protagonist.
Halo: Sure, charge headfirst into that angry Hunter who'll kill you with one swipe of its shield, or drive your Warthog straight into the enemy kill box; no wonder the friendly AI have such a bad reputation.
- In Haunting Ground, Lorenzo witnesses Fiona escape and kill not one but three crazed murderers bent on torturing her. She did this without weapons or prior knowledge of any kind, even though one of those murderers could turn invisible at will, and another was a giant of a man who could snap her limbs like twigs. So obviously, the only logical course of action is for Lorenzo to declare, in front of Fiona herself, that he also wants to kill her. Right before trying to attack her. This does not end well for him.
Heavy Rain has these two stupid, stupid kids:
- Jason, the 10-year-old kid who acted about 3. Despite repeated admonitions from his father to "stay here", and having already wandered off once, Jason wanders off in the middle of a crowded shopping center, gets outside, and somehow crosses the street. When his father gets outside, Jason darts into traffic, prompting Ethan to dive after him... and Jason dies, despite not being directly struck by the car.
- In the past, John Sheppard dies playing hide and seek on a construction site, having gotten his foot stuck in an exposed, flooding water main and drowned. It didn't suddenly flood, because it's been raining all day, and he didn't fall in, because he would have been washed down the pipe and never seen again, so how did he end up in the pipe to begin with? He climbed down into it to hide. He also managed to drown with his face still above water, somehow, and apparently it never occurred to him to try to take his shoe off.
- Madison, oh God, Madison. It's optional in that the player can take the hint that the evil doctor she's investigating is Obviously Evil and get the hell out of there, but the game seems to assume that Madison takes the obligatory torture porn route. This involves accepting an alcoholic drink, in the middle of the day, from a strange man who just agreed to give her prescription sedatives and who associates with violent criminals.
- Pretty much every fatal or near fatal situation Norman Jaden gets into could be avoided if he would simply bring backup with him when he goes to investigate.
Hector: Badge of Carnage has many of the inhabitants of the town of Clapper's Wreake qualify, but the town's police force qualifies almost to a man. By the time Hector takes over the hostage negotiations, they have lost 37 hostage negotiators. They just keep sending them forward and the Terrorist keeps shooting them in the head with a sniper rifle.
- In Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis, the Big Bad Nazi scientist has found a machine that is supposed to turn anyone it's used on into a god, but instead just kills everyone it's used on. When he finishes running all his soldiers through the machine and killing them, he decides to test a new setting of it on the heroes who've been trying to stop him. When Indy points out that, if the experiment succeeds, the scientist will be facing an enraged god, the scientist turns the machine on himself instead. And is killed.
Jade Empire has a sequence where you can help the target of a bounty escape the city. To do so, you have to talk to the city guards while he leaves, telling them he's left the city. Only, instead of simply walking out like a normal traveler, he takes the opportunity to practice walking in a fashion obviously designed to call attention to himself. Then he goes back and does it again. It's like the game's begging you to tell the guard, "You know what, I guess he hasn't left yet. See that idiot? That's him."
- One of the bosses of the Three Kings mission in Just Cause 2 uses a sort of satellite missile system to try and kill you. Thing is, you're on top of a building, without much room, and if you stand in certain spots, he'll happily blow himself up without even touching you.
Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep:
- Pretty much EVERYTHING Terra does in deserves mention, but what takes the cake is after Xehanort kills Eraqus from behind, reveals his deceptions throughout the story, and reveals that he deliberately fueled the darkness inside Terra, Terra still continues to use the darkness from that point on. Xehanort even goads Terra into trying to use the darkness to defeat him right in front of him! (To be fair, though, Terra's non-darkness attempts against Xehanort repeatedly prove ineffective.)
- Speaking of Eraqus, many fans feel that his real problem isn't his Black and White Morality (which he has plenty of Properly Paranoid reason for, actually), but his lousy actual decisions. His scars? In a flashback, he tried to Leeroy Jenkins a Motive Rant-ing Xehanort (instead of using Light from a safe distance), who "pepper-sprayed" him with Darkness when he got close enough. Terra's Darkness? Tempered by Xehanort, who — thanks to Eraqus's Easily Forgiven invitation — has a front-row seat at the Mark of Mastery. Ven's the Living MacGuffin for Xehanort's plan, and Terra won't let Eraqus Shoot the Dog for the greater good? Eraqus should've just explained everything to both boys. While Eraqus does finally learn his lesson, it's too late — as Xehanort kills him In the Back for his stupidity, thus making Eraqus literally this. However, in the secret ending, it's revealed that Eraqus did manage one competent thing mid-death: hiding his Light-heavy Heart in Terra to preemptively protect him from Xehanort's full Demonic Possession-via-Darkness.
The Last of Us: Unlike in most video games where the protagonist cuts their way through an army of foes, Joel and Ellie often run into enemies who have heard of them solely because they have a reputation for leaving a trail of bodies everywhere they go, and never seem to take that into account when they think about stepping up to oppose them.
- Any incompetent player (or even your friends) in Left 4 Dead. Since the game is all about teamwork, anyone who keeps making dumb decisions (wasting items, rushing ahead of the team to go solo, etc.) will have the trope name shouted by the other players. The special infected AI are not always bright, but in Left 4 Dead 2, a Hunter and Jockey will be too happy to try to pounce you, despite the fact that you are revving a chainsaw aimed at their undersides!
- The Lemmings will merrily march into Bottomless Pits or Booby Traps if nothing stands in between.
- The spin-off The Adventures of Lomax also qualifies: defeated enemies turn into normal lemmings. It can be heartwarming to see them happily run away and then float away on their umbrellas... until you reach the levels with water and then see them merrily jump into water and drown immediately after rescuing.
- Chloe of Life Is Strange could be the poster girl for Too Dumb to Live. Most of the early game revolves around rescuing her from the consequences of her own actions. Highlights include playing with a pistol in a junkyard and shooting herself, lounging on a popular and well-used train track, and provoking unstable and violent drug pushers.
- The Poe Twins from Lunar Knights brag to the two main characters that their Casket Armors are unbeatable because one is immune to gunfire and the other is immune to swords. One of the main characters has a gun and the other has a sword, so you can guess how well that works out for the Poes. To be fair, Eddie (the gunproof one) was doing a bang-up job mopping up the Guild in Old Culiacan due to their adherence to the use of Solar Guns. It's when Lucian got "drafted" that things go south for them.
- Not an intentional example, but in Medal of Honor: Rising Sun, there are portions of the game where you are with a platoon of NPCs. If a grenade is thrown within radius of your team (regardless of whether the grenade came from the enemy or from you), the team member that spots it will run to the grenade and attempt to kick it away from the area. Ideally, this can potentially save lives if they spot a grenade you didn't see and kick it before all of you become a bigger bloody firework than The Kid, but then the usefulness also depends on how far the grenade is from the would-be-hero. If the grenade is far enough from the NPC, that NPC who sees it will run toward the grenade (sometimes even involving more than one NPC in the area seeing it and dashing toward it) and attempt to kick it, but arrive just in time for all of them to explode on impact. It will never occur to them just how much time it'll take to get to the grenade to be worth risking their ass to save the platoon, it will also never occur to them if said grenade was in a distance that (as close as it was) is still avoidable by the rest of the platoon who are smart enough not to run to their death, and there are quite a bit of lols to be had when you're doing a casual play on one of the earlier levels where the stage is practically set up for making the friendly-mooks run to their deaths.
- Pretty much every enemy in Mega Man (Classic), but some are just laughable at how dumb they are. An enemy that runs toward you only to pole jump over your head and run back toward where they came, Metools that can be baited into pits... But bosses just get the award of Dumbest Beings on Earth sometimes.
- On the subject of bosses, some examples are: Toad Man either dances and gets interrupted by being shot or jumps about, Star Man can go the entire battle without shooting a Star Crash at you because of Water Wave, Metal Man is fatally weak to his OWN WEAPON and, maybe the best, Cold Man stands still in the opposite end of the room and attacks you with an ice wall or summons a cloud enemy that doesn't harm you directly but hinders your mobility and shooting if you get caught.
- On the subject of story, Mega Man 9 takes the cake. Dr. Wily convinces 8 of Dr. Light's robots to follow him and then sets them on the city, and then pins the blame for it on Dr. Light while claiming to be reformed. Somehow the entire world actually falls for this and calls for Light's arrest, despite the fact that Wily has tried to take over the world several times before.
- The actual good guys aren't much better. Wily claims to be reformed and trying to help him solve the current crisis to Dr. Light at least 4 separate times in the series, and every time it turns out he was behind everything the entire time while usually taking Light out and robs him of several pieces of tech in the process before escaping to his fortress. Somehow Dr. Light and Mega Man keep falling for this.
- Meanwhile, the Repliforce of Mega Man X4 pull off one of the most stupid actions in the entire franchise. When framed for the destruction of a populated metropolitan city, their response to being told to lay down their arms and come in for questioning effectively can be summed up as giving the world a middle-finger and resisting orders, which gets them summarily hunted down. However, it's not very clear if after Colonel refused to turn himself in for questioning, they had requested to the General to make his underling testify or not, or if the human governments decided to just Kill 'em All rather than get to the bottom of things after the Colonel refused to turn himself in to clear things up. The cutscene of the General's proclamation of Reploid Independence does not have a clear timeline. More details on how exactly things got to this point besides Colonel refusing to be detained and instead of being Too Dumb To Live, it might have turned into a case of Humans Are Bastards or What Measure Is a Non-Human?.
- And let's not forget the unnamed Neo Arcadian council in charge of Dr. Weil's punishment between the X series and Mega Man Zero. The man who single-handedly was responsible for a conflict that killed 60% of mankind and 90% of all reploidkind? Turned into a regenerating Reploid and exiled from the only populated city left on Earth to suffer. Because they put eight Judges he personally created in charge of the proceedings. Somehow no one realized that he could simply wait everything out for his plans to come into action, which he did and nearly screwed the world over on. In fact, one might as well say that humanity in general in the franchise are too dumb to live, starting with poorly handling Dr. Wily's constant world domination attempts and then truly coming into a neverending flux with their mix of discrimination and repeated ignorance involving Reploids. Like the whole Copy generation of Reploids that could literally impersonate anyone they have in their data.
- The entirety of the Mega Man Battle Network universe is this. Almost everything in their world is not just connected to the internet but able to be completely controlled by it, including things that have no reason to be. The end result being that someone can remotely do things like make a stove go berserk spewing flame everywhere, lock doors to classrooms, cause traffic accidents, etc. The plans of the villains hinge entirely on the fact that everybody was too dumb to realize the number of potential vulnerabilities this sort of system creates.
- The Space Pirates in Metroid. They decide to reverse engineer Samus Aran's vast and dangerous weaponry and other such functions of the Power Suit she wears, all well and good up until they try to replicate the Morph Ball, of which they know jack about. Since it's been made clear that Science Team has vapor for brains, they went ahead anyway. Result:
Pirate Log: "Aran's Power Suit technology remains a mystery, especially the curious Morph Ball function. All attempts at duplicating it have ended in disaster: four test subjects were horribly broken and twisted when they engaged our Morph Ball prototypes. Science Team wisely decided to move on afterward."
- The leaders of the Galactic Federation aren't much better. After sending Samus to eradicate the Metroids, some of the higher-ups decide to create a top-secret testing/breeding facility for Metroids using the DNA of the Metroid Hatchling that Samus spared on SR 388. At this facility, they decide to genetically alter the already-highly-deadly Metroids in order to remove their only weakness. Later on, when the X-Parasites infest the BSL Research Station (another secret Metroid breeding facility), they get the bright idea to try weaponizing the X-Parasites, despite figuring out by this point that the X are just as dangerous, if not more dangerous, than the Metroids that prey on the X.
- LeChuck from the Monkey Island series. Too many incidents to list. Same could apply to everyone else in the series except Elaine.
- Esher from Myst V: End of Ages. He admits to Watson that he considers his Mengele-esque experiments on the Bahro essential. And he wondered why Watson did not give him the tablet?
Nancy Drew games provide many options along these lines. In Deception Island, for example, you can make and eat a sandwich comprised of stuff that includes mayonnaise, Koko Kringles Ice Cream, fresh jellyfish, mustard, baking soda, and tomatoes. And then get food poisoning.
The Neverhood: one of the stories written on the (very long) wall of the Hall of Records is the story of Klee, a retelling of the story of Joseph and his brothers. The retelling lampshades that the brothers are dumb as rocks for a) not realizing they're facing the brother they sold into slavery, b) falling for the same trick not twice (as in the Biblical story) but three times, c) not remembering their brother even after he tells them who he is.
Nicole: The titular character, for reasons unknown to anyone with a functioning brain, decides that the correct response to being targeted by a kidnapper who has already kidnapped and drugged three women before her is to tell no one about the threatening messages that she has been receiving. Not even the police, because she doesn't want anyone getting hurt. And then it gets worse, because if the player chooses to have her pursue information on the kidnappings, she decides that wandering around in an old, decrepit building that she strongly suspects is the kidnapper's hideout and telling no one where she was going is a good idea. Nothing comes of it, thankfully, but it's a tense scene. Even if that was forgivable, there is absolutely no excuse in the world good enough to justify running off to face the kidnapper alone instead of calling the cops and telling them that that she knows exactly where the guy is going to be — because he told her himself! — so they can arrest him. She even decides not to bring a weapon solely because it might have gotten her weird looks or questions on the way there. Really?
Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer: Provided you chose to proceed with the invasion of the Fugue Plane instead of defending against said invasion, Araman pulls a Last Villain Stand on you after the battle when Kelemvor has already agreed to let you try to get your soul back. Factor in that your party most likely consists of four 30th-level characters at this point.
- Vice-Admiral Arthur Norbank in Nexus: The Jupiter Incident is a subversion of the trope. His almost complete ineptitude in all things military regularly results in huge casualties and embarrassing defeats (sometimes at the hands of an inferior force). Unfortunately, despite many players wishing it was so, he can never seem to die. There is a mission where the player has the option to rescue the thought-to-be-dead vice-admiral. Fortunately, the player can choose not to save him without any consequences. The real problem is how the Nova Command even let this guy command his own shuttle, much less entire fleets, as his only real military victory owed much to the element of surprise (the enemy were prepared to fight Technical Pacifists and never before encountered humans).
Nightcry has a lot of the deaths result from the player having Monica pick some pretty stupid options to hide from the Scissorwalker. Monica can hide inside a washing machine - a large contraption that has a glass front, which locks if it is turned on.
- The 9th Man in Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors attempts to kidnap Clover at knifepoint to force her and Ace to open one of the doors, believing it to be his ticket off the ship. He immediately messes up after that by attempting to go through the door by himself even though Zero explicitly stated to all of the passengers that everyone who opened the door had to go through it, and is "rewarded" with a very messy death after being exploded by the bomb planted in his small intestine. While Hongou told him that the game was altered so that the bomb wouldn't go off if everyone didn't go through the door, given what Hongou has done over the years, the 9th Man would still qualify, just for listening to him.
- The player character Miles Upshurt in Outlast is a freelance journalist who does everything it takes for a story. He follows a tip to head into an insane asylum where supposedly evil, bad things are going down. And he heads there at night. With no proper means of protection.
- The player character Waylon Park in the DLC episode Whistleblower could count, too, given that he sends out an e-Mail (the aforementioned tip) to journalists about the things going down in the asylum. Subverted since he at least attempted to hide the sending of the e-Mail by using his personal laptop and routing it through a different firewall and server. Unfortunately, it didn't work and it was still discovered.
Outlaws: So... apparently the villain thought that the correct way to deal with an ex-lawman who was fired for "shooting a few men before the jury gave him the go-ahead" was "burn his home, kill his wife and kidnap his daughter". The villain's henchmen lampshade this with increasing vigor as the body count rises.
Overlord: The peasants coming to bring you news about the world. It's already dumb enough to come visit the leader of the evil army who's wrecking the world in the heart of his fortress and expect anything good to come from that, but demanding to be compensated (some even ask for a night with the Overlady)? Pit of Death it is.
- The civilians in PAYDAY The Heist are quite suicidal and will usually be your source of money lost at the end of a successful heist. When a heist begins, all the civilians stand up and sometimes run around in a panic, even if they're in the crossfire during your shoot out with the police. Most people would find a place to hide and stay there or at least lie on the ground and don't move till the shooting stops, but the civilians in the game will freeze in place while the cops will gladly shoot through the civilians to hit you. You have to shout at the civilians at least 2 or 3 times to get them to stay down, but they may get back up anyway to get shot by you while Bain scolds you for shooting innocents.
PAYDAY 2 gets a subversion. Pager Guy, the security dispatcher who contacts guards whenever they're in some form of distress, is the most gullible idiot alive, including male American guards responding to pages with female voices, heavy non-American accents, or just plain not in English, on top of the hilariously bad excuses they give him for why they called in the first place. The subversion is the fact that Pager Guy is never physically present and can't be killed, but every time he believes that a Scottish lady's dog Binky was chewing on the radio and paged him accidentally, it pretty much guarantees that at least one person is dead and the establishment that his company was hired to protect is being thoroughly raided by the Payday gang. However, he will sound the alarm after 4 call ins, but that is mostly due to him getting annoyed at the excuses rather than knowing that the calls were fake.
- Also in PAYDAY 2, Jimmy gets a turn with this trope in the Hardcore Henry trailer. He manages to capture Chains, Wolf and Hoxton, which is more than reason enough for the gang to want him immediately dead, but then he gives them back their guns after proving that he's a more credible threat than almost any of the gang's actual enemies. He ends up having to kill himself to make amends, leaving the energetic, weirdly affectionate coke-fiend version of himself to become the Payday Gang's Maniac.
- The Meat Sims in Perfect Dark have horrible aim, run past you, and will stand still in order to make it easier for you to kill them. Playing against them in the Combat Simulator is like squeezing a stress ball.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney:
- Phoenix Wright, great lawyer that he is, suffers from this on occasion in service to the plot; his own intuition has to be shunted aside for the player to have an active role. Sometimes, however, this justification fails. Take the third case of the first game, where he blithely confronts a blackmailer on her actions, knowing full well she has ties to the Yakuza. Only a Big Damn Heroes moment from Gumshoe keeps him from getting rubbed out. Actually, Wright does this in almost every single case in the first game, and always seems to do so in secluded places with no witnesses where his suspected murderer holds all the cards. By the 2nd game, he seemed to have learned his lesson and had stopped confronting suspects since.
- Yes, Kay, it's a wonderful idea to let everyone in a five block radius know that you're the Great Thief Yatagarasu. Including Interpol agents. When you're standing over a corpse in a burned-out room and the Yatagarasu is wanted for theft, murder, and arson. Certainly this will not hurt your defense at all. One wonders how she plans on not getting caught, or if she even thought that far.
- Also from Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth, is recurring character Larry Butz. Usually, he's content to just Be as Unhelpful as Possible, but his unhelpfulness crosses into this trope when he suddenly finds himself determined to defeat Edgeworth in a a "battle of wits"...while Edgeworth is in the middle of attempting to prove him innocent of murder.
Larry: Watch as I defeat Edgey in a battle of wits!
Edgeworth: (Larry, have you forgotten that, should I "lose", your victory prize will be your arrest?)
- There's also Wocky, who ran into the rival family's territory with just a knife and was shot for his trouble.
- Florent L'belle, who would rather create an ungodly convoluted plan which includes murdering the alderman, which ends up getting him jailed for murder, all in an attempt to steal a gold ingot that turns out to no longer be there, than just go ahead and commercialize his haircare product, which he already received several offers for, rather than keeping it just to himself, when caught in a huge debt, part of which is due to him wasting money on advertising the said haircare product that he doesn't even intend to sell. It's more like Too Narcissistic To Live, but still.
- In the first game, Miles Edgeworth accepts an invitation to go out on a lake in a canoe, in the middle of the night, alone with a person he barely knows. You'd think a genius prosecutor would recognize such an obvious setup for a crime.
- The titular Pikmin have a bad habit of being this, on accord of automatic AI decisions getting them into often-perilous situations.
Plague Inc.: Most humans on Casual. The Plague is threatening the world? Let's hug the infected and never wash our hands.
- Numerous Pokémon have some Too Dumb to Live behaviors. Regarding how one would expect the computer to know to pick the smartest move available when they KNOW your types, and how they always send a mon with a move effective against you... they still do some pretty stupid things. These include:
- Pokémon using Dig, hoping you're too stupid to pick Earthquake or Magnitude.
- Pokémon using Fly or Bounce, hoping you're too stupid to pick Thunder or Smack Down.
- Using Sunny Day so they can use Solarbeam, even if you have it on the currently selected Pokémon. (Does not count if it's Groudon or Kyogre, as their abilities trigger the same effects as Sunny Day and Rain Dance, respectively. The same applies to some Ninetales, some Politoed, and Mega Charizard Y.)
- Using Sunny Day when your current Pokémon can use even a single, weak Fire-type attack. It's as if the opponent is wearing a "Kill Me With Fire" sign. It gets even worse when it's a Grass-type using it, such as Cherrim.
- Using Rain Dance so they can spam Thunder, even if your currently selected Pokémon can use Thunder (or any Water-type move, for that matter).
- Or when you're using a Water/Ground type (giving you the double advantage of getting an attack bonus from Rain Dance and being immune to Electric attacks).
- Using Selfdestruct or Explosion when the Pokémon out currently is a Ghost-type.
- They also do it on Rock-types or Steel-types, but they might actually inflict some damage.
- As well as when you are in the middle of a two-turn move with a semi invulnerable turn like Fly, Dig, or Phantom Force. Or when you have a Substitute around.
- Also, using Selfdestruct or Explosion when the Pokémon ordered to do so is the trainer's last one and their opponent still has multiple 'mons left.
- Using Perish Song as their last Pokémon when you still have at least one other Mon conscious in your team.
- In the Battle Tower's Multi-Battle mode, this trope occurs when your computer partner uses Earthquake and the only Pokémon affected on the field is the player's, while both of the opponents are immune to the Ground-type, whether through being Flying-type or via the ability Levitate.
- Attacking with a barrage of Swallow, Spit Up, and Fling, despite not once using Stockpile or holding an item.
- The move Curse does something different when a Ghost-type uses it. It deals 50% maximum HP damage to the user and lays a curse (like a poison damage-over-time effect) on the opponent. Not only will Phoebe's Pokémon in Generation III and Karen's Spiritomb in Generation IV do this when they're below 50% HP (thus making the Pokémon faint), it may be seen screwing the player. That doesn't, however, excuse wild Haunter who use it... it can sometimes make catching them a bit needlessly frustrating.
- Furthermore, in Pokémon Emerald Version, Phoebe's first Dusclops will constantly spam the move Protect until it fails, leaving the player to freely use items and non-damage-dealing (Status) moves, then go to town when Protect's PP expires.
- Graveler seems to have specifically evolved against the will of natural selection and appears biologically programmed to explode at the sight of other Pokémon.
- The same may also be said of Electrode, though it will at least put out a contractually obligated Thundershock or Tackle before choosing "death before dishonor."
- Graveler's pre-evolved state, Geodude, can act pretty stupid when they appear in hordes in Pokémon X and Y. If you use an attack capable of hitting all of them at once (like Surf or Earthquake), most of them will survive on 1HP due to Sturdy. But then if one of them uses Magnitude, it will KO all four of its friends. (The urge not to laugh when it happens is very hard to resist.)
- It's less funny if one happens to be a shiny however. note You aren't allowed to throw a pokeball unless only 1 wild pokemon is present, so you need to defeat every opponent except the one you wish to catch, which is harder when they are busy killing each other.
- Anytime the computer (or player) uses Encore (a move which forces your opponent to repeat their last move) after your opponent uses a highly damaging move. Garchomp used Earthquake!! Clefable used Encore! note It should be said, though, that in competitive play this same move would actually work very well, as the player using Clefable could then simply switch out to a team member immune to Earthquake and leave Garchomp still Encored and in a checkmate position. Of course, you have to survive said damaging move with your Encore mon, making Encore a solid example of Difficult, but Awesome.
- Starmie used Hydro Pump! It doesn't affect Groudon... note The area around Sootopolis is rife with Water-type Pokemon and their trainers, including Wallace, who make copious use of Water-type attacks. Primal Groudon's Desolate Land negates these attacks completely, making its compound Water-type weakness moot.
- Also if you send out a pokemon with extremely high physical defense against a special attacker who has a physical move you are weak to. Your opponent will keep using that physical move despite your defenses and their low attack stat even though the rest of their moves would do 3 to 4x more damage. (and the same for the opposite stats).
- Pyukumuku is stated to never leave a spot it likes, to the point of starving to death. Can't get more too dumb to live than that.
- As Pokemon GO the game is an Augmented Reality game involving visiting points of interest in real life, Niantic takes steps to prevent players from becoming real-life examples of this, such as pop-up messages warning the player not to tresspass, drive, or enter dangerous areas while playing, measures to stop certain game functions if the player is detected to be traveling over 30 mph, and a "be aware of your surroundings" warning on the loading screen with an illustration of someone playing the game while unaware that he's walking towards a very angry Gyarados.
- The fifteenth chapter of Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon has the Hero Killer of a villain targeting various Legendary Pokemon and turning them into stone send out messages claiming that they will turn Entei into stone at Showdown Mountain not long after they managed to petrify Latios and Latias. Said Pokemon are capable of flying faster than jet planes, turning invisible, and have enough psychic power to level a tidal wave. You have one guess where Entei goes to after the message was sent.
- In the video game version of the Pokemon TCG, there is a character called Imakari? (yes, the question mark is part of his name) that hangs out in the side room of one of the gyms and will play against you if you challenge him. One of the cards in the deck is named after him, and all it does is confuse his pokemon. Not yours, his.
Pony Island: Digging through the code (and cryptic information Baphomet reveals) shows the crusader Theodore died because he failed to storm Jerusalem. The reason? He tried to go in through the Golden Gate. Of all the eight gates to the city, its the only one that's permanently closed.
- In the Portal universe, the entirety of Aperture Science deserves a posthumous stupidity award for empowering their AI Master Computer, who had already been proven to have murderous intentions, to release a deadly neurotoxin throughout the facility. Portal 2 explores this further by revealing that when they ran out of test subjects in the 1980s, the researchers began testing their inventions on themselves. The founder, Cave Johnson, died of respiratory problems from exposure to ground-up moon rocks.
- Also inverted in Portal 2. A Logic Bomb that fries a bunch of robot Mooks and nearly kills GLaDOS does absolutely nothing to Wheatley. He is literally Too Dumb to Be Killed.
GLaDOS: This. Sentence. Is. FALSE! (to self) don't think about it don't think about it don't think about it don't think about it...
Wheatley: Um... TRUE. I'll go "true". Huh. That was easy. I'll be honest, I might have heard that one before, though. Sort of cheating.
GLaDOS: It's a PARADOX! There IS no answer!
- Also, during the Perpetual Testing Initiative, you encounter several alternate Caves, one of whom continually reminds the testers that they are in space every time he's on the recording. People still regularly blow through the hull searching for the big secret.
Space!Cave: And another hull breach. Let's all give a big hand to the test subjects of sphere eighteen for briefly uncovering the company-wide conspiracy, which is that there's no air in space. Once again. We're in space. It's not a secret. I am sincerely regretting my decision not to install windows in this thing.
- Chell qualifies if she falls for some of the rather absurd lies that GLaDOS (and Wheatley in the sequel, who's even worse) try to use to lure her to her doom. Many of them suggest they have a low opinion of Chell's intelligence (such as trying to fool her into jumping into a bottomless pit by telling her a sex-starved boy band is down there). Whether she falls for most of them is up to the player.
- The citizens of New York in [PROTOTYPE]. You're driving a tank, and they think it's a good idea to run right to you.
- That's at least partially because they have this bizarre aversion to crossing the street at any place but a designated crosswalk. Clearly whoever programmed that was not a New Yorker.
- Practically anyone who thinks it's a good idea to go one-on-one with Alex Mercer and isn't a Super Soldier. Hell, anyone who thinks it's a good idea to be in the same state as Mercer, let alone actively engage him, unless they're a Super Soldier. Even then, it's a risk.
- As the Punisher is ascending some stairs in the 2004 video game, a group of mafia soldiers blow themselves up while trying to set an explosive trap. The Punisher even comments something to the effect of "Gnuccis and explosives. Bad combination."
Ratchet & Clank
- In Ratchet & Clank (2002), the Infobot for Aridia shows Skidd and his agent being shot at by missiles above the planet's surface. Skidd's agent thinks that they're a fireworks display in Skidd's honor.
- In Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal, one of the Galactic Ranger missions on Tyhrranosis involves them trying to deactivate a forcefield offscreen while you assault the Tyhrranoid forces. One of the Rangers suggests that another stick his finger in the transformer, and once he's convinced he does so and is vaporized, which also lowers the forcefield.
- In Rayman Origins, most of the enemies lack any common sense.
- In particular the Livingstones. Sure, stand in an area where a huge platform or wheel is a touch away from crushing you, or stand on an unstable platform over something dangerous. I'm sure nothing bad will ever happen.
- The Waiter Dragons will bounce on gelatin limes into dangerous objects.
- The Hunters. There are two types. The first type shoots blue missiles, which travel in a straight line and can be used as platforms. Since the hunter shoots the platform-missiles, they can easily be used to get to the Hunter and kill it. The second type is slightly smarter, and they shoot red missiles that seek out the player. If you stand near the Hunter, the missile will kill the Hunter.
Rayman Legends has somewhat smarter enemies. However, some enemies just stomp on Teensies. These enemies are harmless and immobile, and therefore easily defeated.
- After a large number of zombie outbreaks and failed business ventures resulting from said outbreaks, you'd think that Umbrella Corporation would move on to something different or at least put in stricter containment protocols, but nooooo...
- Quite a few examples from Resident Evil:
- In Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, the fat guy in the warehouse in the beginning of the game. His choices in this tough and horrifying Zombie Apocalypse scenario are A) risk tagging along with the highly competent and well-armed police officer and try to head for safety or B) tell said officer to go screw herself and instead try your luck hiding unarmed and alone in a shipping container in an unlocked warehouse. Guess which one he picks? Yep. Upon returning to the warehouse, you find that the shipping container has been broken into and not far outside it is the guy's lifeless corpse, being picked at by a pair of zombies.
- Jill and her "pals" in the U.B.C.S. have a moment later on as well. They come across a cable car in dire need of some repairs, and it takes a solid hour-ish of gameplay to find the parts you need. After they finally scrounge together a power cord, oil, and a fuse, they fire the darned thing up and go full speed out of the city without bothering to check anything else on it, like the brakes. Cue epic almost fatal cable car crash that separates and almost kills them.
- In the Leon/Helena story arc for Resident Evil 6, the two hapless victims in the first chapter who are trying to call for help by waving and hollering at the security camera. What makes them stupid is that both of them are doing the hollering and waving, whereas the smart thing to do would be for one of them to check down the hallway for any danger. A horde of zombies easily sneak up behind the two idiots while their attention is focused entirely on the camera and they get devoured for their trouble.
- Another example from 6 is the valiant but ridiculously stupid helicopter gunner from the prologue, who jumps out and buys time for Leon and Helena to run to the safety of the waiting helicopter. Oh, but they're not running from zombies or bioweapons, they're running from a wall of flame. Yeah... Shooting a wall of flame isn't going to slow it down, buddy.
- There's also the woman who opens a shutter door trying to find her husband, ignoring the loud banging and moaning on the other side, and gets dragged under and eaten for her trouble. And the Jerk Ass who decides he's better off on the streets of Tall Oaks than inside a fortified gun store, steals his girlfriend's weapon, and runs outside to immediately and unsurprisingly get killed. There's plenty of C-List Fodder in RE6, but several of them are impossible to feel sorry for because of how overbearingly stupid they are.
- In Resident Evil 2 we have the guy driving the truck during the opening. The zombie apocalypse is about a week old at this point. The police have been annihilated, the city has been cordoned off by the Army, the streets on are fire, routinely barricaded and soaked with blood, most of the population is dead, dying or undead... and this guy is still merrily cruising around the city wondering why the hitchhiker he just picked up bit off half his bicep.
- The intro to Resident Evil 7: Ethan, after getting an email from his missing wife Mia, WHO WAS PRESUMED DEAD FOR YEARS, decides that he will go look for her alone. With no weapons. Or any way to guard himself. Even after seeing odd (main gate is padlocked, no answer on the intercom, which is admittedly not that bad, but Ethan decides to continue by trespassing), disturbing (a... "scene" made of strung up deer carcasses and buzzsaws, to which he has no reaction to), foreboding (charred remains of Mia's belongings thrown outside the house, a sign that say "accept her gift"), or downright mentally traumatizing (watching a VHS of a a guy found with his MOUTH IMPALED ON A PIPE, THEN THE BODIES BEING DRAGGED AWAY HORROR MOVIE STYLE), not ONCE does Ethan consider going back. In fact, he’s mostly unfazed.
- The guests in RollerCoaster Tycoon can be this if you're feeling cruel. Sure, let's ride that incomplete rollercoaster. What could possibly go wrong?
- There's a minigame in RuneScape that requires you to escort people through an extremely dangerous swamp for rewards. There are 6 people, 2 being easy to escort, 2 being a medium difficulty escort and the last 2 being hard difficulty. While one of the two hard escorts seems to understand that anything other than hiding behind a rock will get her killed, the other, a rowdy and excited old man, will gladly assault the giant snakes, panther-like monsters, spirits, giant snails, and the boat-eating tentacle monsters, with little consideration for the fact that he's more fragile than soggy toilet paper.
- See that big, tough-looking guy/gal clad in the crazy outfit and tattoos? The one that is followed by a legion of men and women in purple? That's the Boss of the Third Street Saints in Saints Row. He/she is also the harbinger of destruction who can survive whatever you dish out on him/her. Do you really want him/her to focus his/her entire attention on you? Many, many people throughout the series thought that was a good idea. Very few of them survived after Boss was through with them.
Scarface: The World Is Yours averts this sometimes. The last two guys in a gang of fifty will wise up and run away... or sometimes come back. Yes, Tony Montana just shot dozens of your friends dead with a LMG. You, with your pistol, will succeed.
- You can play as someone like this in School Days. This is a good thing, as doing so is both hilarious and leads to the bad endings that made the game (in)famous.
- The enemy AI in Scott Pilgrim isn't smart enough to avoid obvious and fatal environmental hazards. They'll walk into pitfalls and through roaring fires without a second thought.
- Some of the deaths really show off the protagonist's stupidity. For example, the player can command him to go down a well. Rather than climb down in case the well is dry or the water is shallow, the text states that the hero dives headfirst into what ends up being a dry well.
- "Use Sword on Self."
- Sister game Uninvited has its own bone-headed moment, but the cake goes to the giant spider. The game outright stops you from moving to its screen three times telling you that the giant spider will kill you. Then, if you still keep trying, you move to the giant spider's area. And it kills you.
Well, what do you know. A giant spider.
- Nearly every single character in every Silent Hill game, player characters, villains, minor characters, and even characters who don't appear. Usually justified by them being a) trapped against their will, b) searching for someone important to them, c) completely batshit insane, or d) all of the above, and sometimes... it isn't. Special mention goes to Alex Shepard, who will stick his arm into a random hole in the wall, often leading to it being ripped off resulting in death.
- In SimAnt, when the ants are in the house, they can walk into electrical sockets and die.
The Sims and The Sims 2 are notorious for its less-than-intelligent behavior. The best known example is an accidental kitchen fire. Rather than flee the house, the Sims will scream and yell around the fire, occasionally then burning themselves to death.
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions:
- Electro for continuing the fight with Spider-Man on the dam after seeing that the rain reacted negatively with his powers.
- A S.H.I.E.L.D. scientist giving a tablet fragment to Carnage.
- Mysterio for making a last ditch attempt to regain the ToOaC in the face of four different iterations of Spider-Man. Lampshaded by Amazing Spider-Man.
- Silver Sable follows the tracking device she'd placed on Juggernaut to the other side of New York after Spider-Man threw it away to get rid of her. At no point does she question Juggernaut's sudden departure from the construction yard without leaving a trail of destruction right in front of her, or the speed he was moving.
- Very few of the villains in the DS version use their fragment pieces to boost their powers.
Splatoon 2 has its examples, and we don't mean the player base.
- The Salmonid enemies in Salmon Run always approach the player's location, with the smaller enemies doing so with the intent of bashing their target into submission. Not necessarily bad on its own, but it goes from questionably intelligent to this should one of the players have a Roller, which can pave over dozens of Smallfries and Chum faster than you can say "Wryyyyyyy!" Smallfries have it worse, since even a Brush can sweep them aside, but the fact they're small enough to go under arms fire does help them a bit...
- Pearl, which is probably why she's a pop star and not a battler. During the news, there's mentions of things she does that cause her to lose, such as counting handholds in Mussleforge Fitness, or going to the stage and performing in Starfish Mainstage.
- The race Thraddash in Star Control 2 is so warlike they bombed their own civilization into the Stone Age. Nineteen times.
- There's a sort of meta example with the Thraddash. You can make them your allies and have their ships built for you to use. At one point, you need to steal an artifact that's sacred to them. If you talk to them after that, they'll instantly know it was you who stole it (because it vanished after you asked to see it) and declare war on you permanently. However, if you leave their space and never talk to them ever again, they'll remain your ally and you can still build their ships, perhaps because they're just too stupid/lazy to come and accuse you outside of their space.
- The Artificial Stupidity in Star Ruler can become this if you game the system hard enough to get a massive lead on your enemies. This empire has ships that are orders of magnitude more durable, shooty, and quick-accelerating than ours! Let's declare war on him! What Could Possibly Go Wrong??
- Lampshaded in Star Trek: Borg; an early puzzle requires the player to make repairs to a console. One of the wrong choices in the situation results in the player getting a lethal electric shock, after which Q (who is masquerading as the ship's doctor) scans the player's body and apologetically tells his shipmates that the player was "just too stupid to live."
- The entire game is this, to an extent. Because the character, a cadet utterly unqualified for the tasks he's asked to perform, and, you the player, who is given little information on how to proceed, are basically expected to die several times only to come back and progress through trial and error.
Star Wars: Battlefront: occasionally you'll get an AI ally who has himself as both Nemesis and Bait. Meaning not only has he managed to grenade himself, he's managed to grenade himself more often than any given enemy has managed to shoot him.
- Bowser of Super Mario Bros.. Numerous times, his defeats are literally due to his own stupidity. As a character, he displays even more idiocy, once setting a bomb on fire that was a few feet away from him to show how to set it off in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, and not realizing that he couldn't take over the world if the world was destroyed in Super Paper Mario.
- After you shoot down one of the Arzenal pilots that turned to Embryo in the endgame of Super Robot Wars V, the latter leaves her to die and flat out admits in front of everyone that he considers her nothing more than a disposable tool. The other pilot keeps fighting for him anyway and meets the exact same end.
- In Supreme Commander, an ally of your character touches an ancient alien device that is emitting a strange energy signature, in violation of a direct order from the commander in chief of the entire cybran nation. He survives, but you have to kill him and his robotic battle suit after the artifact takes over. You know it's a bad sign when the other AI characters start yelling at him, but the funny energy signature mentioned should have given it away.
- The people of the planet depicted in Tales of Symphonia and Tales of Phantasia suffer from this collectively. Periodically, somebody builds a massive Mana cannon that devastates the environment and frequently causes The End of the World as We Know It. As soon as the dark ages caused by its previous use are over, they get started on the next Mana Cannon, and are then astonished when it makes things worse instead of better. You'd think they'd notice the pattern after the third time or so, but no.
Symphonia and Abyss's characters have a common habit of keeping secrets and vital information from their fellow comrades and the player, which sometimes leads to needless injuries, deaths, and plot complications that could have been avoided.
- This has the potential to (and often does) happen in Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World. Whenever Raine or Marta run out of TP, which they NEED to be useful, they'll just charge the enemy unless you tell them to stay away from the enemy. And even if Marta's not functioning as a healer, she will spam her combat skills and waste her TP.
- Which is lampshaded in one of the Party Chats where Emil and Marta argue about what role she even fills in the party, since she can't decide if she's going to be a bruiser or a support.
Tales of the Tempest: Rubia's mother learns her husband has been killed by Rommy. She's an even less competent fighter than her husband, yet proceeds to rush inside the building (after The Hero specifically says not to!) and gets mowed down instantly. This is so bad it looks like she's committing Suicide by Cop.
Team Fortress 2:
- The Demoman in the fluff makes some very terrible choices. Opening an obviously possessed book after a wizard told him not to. Working with explosives while drunk. Going to battle while drunk. Attempting to blow up the Loch Ness monster as a child. It is a miracle that he has ONLY lost one eye.
- The Ullapool Caber is this, a potato masher grenade, and the Demoman uses it by clubbing his enemies with it. The item description reads, "a sober man would throw it..."
- The Soldier is not much better, deciding to fight the Nazis until 1949, making a bazooka out of random garbage he found, and antagonizing his roommate that also happens to be a wizard. The last two Halloween events were entirely his fault. When a time traveling Engineer tells the team to not open the robots' crates, the Soldier instantly does the opposite.
- Merasmus put many "horrors" on his wheel of fate, including taking away gravity and changing the size of characters' heads. This includes making his enemies indestructible.
Merasmus: "You. Are. GODS! I... meant to do that. It will go badly for you. You watch."
- In Total War: Shogun 2, the AI controlled enemy general will routinely charge out in front of his army and ride directly into your spear formations, often going so fast he gets killed before the rest of his army is in combat. In castle battles, the AI generals will routinely dismount and scale the walls in a section completely different from where the rest of their army is. Many times they will stay back during the battle, but then dismount and climb the walls when the rest of their army is routing, essentially attempting to win the battle single-handedly.
- Fairies in Touhou are an entire species of this trope, pathetically weak beings that throw themselves at individuals magnitudes more powerful than them and are swiftly obliterated as a result (fortunately for them, they instantly resurrect after death, but they never learn their lesson). Cirno is a stellar example, declaring herself to be "the strongest!" and acting as such, which rarely ends well for her. In Great Fairy Wars, she even picked a fight with Marisa, a girl with enough firepower to level continents (that Cirno managed to actually win doesn't make her actions any less stupid). She's only saved by the fact that all the danmaku battles she's partaken in are non-lethal, something she didn't even know when she picked her first fight.
- Word of God states that fairies are agitated by the powerful youkai in the vicinity (that you will soon be fighting). They either try to run away, i.e., run towards you, or are just scrambling at random and fire at whatever startles them, i.e., you.
- Most humans coming from the Outside World do not last long in Gensokyo either, asking the local man-eating Cute Monster Girl for directions and brushing off the natives as backwards and superstitious.
- Shinmyoumaru Sukuna initiated the social revolution plot of Double Dealing Character after Seija Kijin told her that her spot at the bottom of Gensokyo's pecking order was because "Might Makes Right" is the way Gensokyo works, so weaklings like them have no rights... It's just that Seija is an Amanojaku, and Amanojaku are infamous scammers and pathological liars, and Shinmyoumaru knew that Seija was an Amanojaku at the time she was duped. "Horrible Judge of Character" does not cover the levels of gullibility required for such foolishness.
- It's no surprise that the very similar game True Crime: New York City has civilians doing the exact same thing as above! This is the reason why it's literally impossible to do a purely good cop run without getting a single bad cop point.
The Turing Test: At the end, Ava and Sarah decide to walk into TOM's control room to disconnect it without any kind of protection, despite knowing that TOM is able and willing to use lethal force.
Vagrant Story has Rosencrantz, an ex-Riskbreaker with magic immunity. Thing is, there's a reason he's an ex-Riskbreaker, and it's because he's only decent as a me lee combatant, and the only reason he gets as far as he does is because he focuses most of his attention on fighting magicians who can't hurt him. Rather than keep the fact that he can't be affected by magic a secret advantage, he flaunts it to everyone who'll listen, and by the time he finally confronts Sydney, Sydney has had plenty of time to come up with a counter-strategy... in the form of giant, animated statue that promptly crushes Rosencrantz into Snob Paste.
- Imagine for a moment that you are an officer of an Evil Empire's army, and you are in the process of invading enemy woodland territory with the intent to conquer the country. While looking for one of your wounded soldiers who has gotten separated from your group, you find that he has died of his wounds — in the company of that plucky young maverick lieutenant from the enemy side who is the only reason you haven't been sent home to your family yet, with no back-up beyond his equally plucky pigtailed girlfriend/sergeant, who currently has a busted ankle. You have your entire unit with you, ready to gun them down at any moment, and could rid yourself of the only serious obstacles in the way of your success in one fell stroke. Now imagine that you're a moron because the game has An Aesop to preach, and you let them go because now is not the designated killing time and they're obviously no threat to you at the moment.
- Selvaria's death is framed as being a sad testament to her unrequited love for a man sending her to her demise... except the only people capable of stopping her were gone. She could have just wiped out everyone in Ghirlandaio the normal way and gone home, or, better yet, anywhere else; by that point, she could have defected and Squad 7 would have taken her in without question (mainly because nobody gives a shit about all the people she killed once Alicia becomes a Valkyria herself. She even waits for Squad 7 to get far enough away for them to escape her Final Flame, thus completely negating the worth of her sacrifice.
- One of the endings in Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines involves siding with the local Kuei-Jin — outright alien Asian vampires that despise the Kindred as barbaric monsters and normally kill them on sight. It ends about as well as you expect. You also get to side with La Croix, who has been sending you off on suicide missions all game, knowing that he will probably open the sarcophagus you have been warned all game not to open up!
- In The Walking Dead, this trope occurs in such a way that it is at first infuriating, and then possibly satisfying depending on what the player chooses to do. A woman will come screaming out of a building. In the middle of a zombie apocalypse, of course. She will make so much noise that she attracts a crowd of zombies. Kenny lampshades and exploits this trope by suggesting that Lee should let her serve as a distraction for them. Lee can either let her ass be eaten, or shoot her in the head to put her out of her misery. Either way, Darwin wins again.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt:
- Ronvid of the Small Marsh is an incompetent knight seemingly stalking Geralt, challenging him to a duel to the death on three separate occasions despite being severely outclassed. He surrenders after a few hits the first two times Geralt fights him, and the third time he ambushes Geralt with a couple of hired thugs not much more skilled than him despite having his ass handed to him twice already. At this point you can simply put him down or use Axii to convince him to finally go home.
- During the Witcher Contract to hunt down the noonwraith known as The White Lady, you're told of a band of drunkards who try to get rid of the ghost by fucking it. Their attempt went about as well as you'd expect, and you come across their torn apart corpses during your hunt.
- Duchess Anna Henrietta in the end of the Blood and Wine expansion. Geralt and Regis discover that her sister, Syanna, was involved with a Higher Vampire and manipulated him into committing the serial killings terrorizing Toussaint while at the same time plotting Anna's assassination. When her vampire lover realizes he was tricked, he threatens to destroy Beauclair unless Syanna is brought to him, which the Duchess then proceeds to ignore until a vampire invasion kills thousands within her capital city. If Syanna survives all this, then the Duchess goes to hug her sister who she knew wanted her dead at her trial without so much as putting her in handcuffs first, which ends in both of their deaths unless Geralt managed to convince Syanna to let it go.
- Ships in the X-Universe piloted by NPCs or Player Mooks will always take the most direct route to their destination. Even if that route goes straight through a Xenon sector and they are not equipped with a jumpdrive to hop over it with.
- The street trash in the Yakuza games seem to be this in general, since it doesn't seem to matter how many of them get utterly and painfully thrashed by Kiryu, Majima, Akiyama et al, if they see you, they charge straight at you for a fight. You'd think that after the fifth guy got a bicycle smashed over his head, they'd take the hint...
- Civilians in every Arcade Shooter ever. Here's a tip, people: If you're a hostage or otherwise in a building full of nasty evil things and the heroes come to rescue you, get down on the floor in full view of the rescuers and don't get up until they tell you it's all clear. Do NOT jump out from behind crates and surprise them!
- The later House of the Dead games are actually surprisingly good at averting this. 3 and 4 simply don't have any civilians to worry about, and House of the Dead: OVERKILL has civilians waiting out in plain sight and clearly shouting for help instead of surprising you — they are still sometimes Too Dumb to Live in other ways, though, such as standing stock still in places where they end up blocking your shots at the mutants, or running toward hordes of them, rather than away.
- In many games, perhaps too many to name, AI (and occasionally player) characters have the tendency to fire small arms at large, heavily armored vehicles. Word of advice, your pistol is not gonna hurt that M1 Abrams barreling down the street. (Does not apply to Halo, though, where just about any weapon can harm a vehicle and/or its driver.)
- Just about every protagonist in any adventure game ever created can be ordered to do some pretty stupid things. Look at many "Ways to die" videos on YouTube to see some characters doing some... really really dumb stuff. (Like drinking a pot full of salt water in the desert, saying "Hello" to a sleeping bandit, stuffing a lockpick up your nose, microwaving radioactive pool water...)''
- Nearly all NPCs in any game that allows and encourages stealth kills. When you have a brand new arrow sticking into the back of your head, then maybe, just maybe, "It must have been nothing" might not be a good answer.
- Pretty much every target of an Escort Mission ever. Taking the longer but safer route? Nah, let's take the way through the heavily populated monster village!
Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War has an inversion: There is a time limit on how long you have for your convoy to reach the target area; it's the player's choice at each crossroad whether to take the short path or the long path, and the shorter paths have more enemies.
- Another variation is if the escortee is combat-capable but lacks target prioritization: see Oda Nobunaga in Samurai Warriors (Battle of Honnouji, Oda side while not playing as him), or Gilthares Fairbough in World of Warcraft (in the Horde-exclusive "Free from the Hold" quest) for their tendency to fight whoever they come across, no matter how inconsequential the enemy or how far it would diverge them from their path.
- Inverted in Dynasty Warriors 6 (PS2 version) if you're playing the Battle of Chang Ban as Wei... part of the Fake Difficulty comes from the fact that Liu Bei does prioritize fleeing due to his many civilian followers; that's the whole point of the mission for both sides.