Fascinating games

23 Great Unorthodox Weapons In Video Games

Clockwise from top left: Super Mario Bros.  3 (Screenshot: Nintendo), Shovel Knight (Screenshot: Yacht Club Games), The Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past (Screenshot: Nintendo), Portal (Screenshot: Valve )

Clockwise from top left: Super Mario Bros. 3 (Screenshot: Nintendo), shovel knight (Screenshot: Yacht Club Games), The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (Screenshot: Nintendo), Gate (Screenshot: Valve)

It’s nothing new to see that a disproportionate number of video games focus on violence. Killing in games is, after all, very easy (and not just in a squishy moral sense). It’s a simple, easy-to-implement formula: apply bullet or blade A to enemy B, drop loot, repeat as needed until game over.

Weapons fascinate in games, however, because of How? ‘Or’ What they allow us to interact with the world (usually in a very “now there’s a little less” way, admittedly). They let us change things, modify things, affect things. If we talk about guns and swords, these changes happen in a simple and binary way: stab, shoot, bludgeon, etc. But what about other weapons? What about the less orthodox entries in the gaming arsenal?

That’s what we’re looking at here today: some of the most interesting weapons in all of video game history that are not a simple set of well-defined axes or spears or Uzis or other simple implements of death. What’s lurking in the weeds beyond your Super Shotguns or Master Swords?

Many of the entries on this list (presented in chronological order of their first appearance) are as much practical tools as killing tools; many are concerned with movement, which others primary way we interact with virtual worlds. But together, they share a key element: they transform basic assumptions about violence in games, taking it to heart and making it, for lack of a better word, joyful. If games can never shake their connection to murder, they can at least display some of the unique interactive creativity that only the medium can possess.