compelling trash action

  • blood will tell (ps2)
    unglamorous, kinda serious, not-very-good sword-fighty time with a compelling narrative premise.

  • bullet witch (360, pc)
    yall know bullet witch. kinda dumb, kinda weird level scale, the shooting is really interesting (especially in comparison to contemporary shooters) because of how plain and bare-bones it is, but how good it is also. this is important and will come up in other games on this list.

  • chaos legion (ps2)
    extremely dumb punching time. there are too many enemies and they take too long to kill and do too much damage and it’s a brown-grey slog of doing the same few attacks and trying desperately to claw your way through unfair/rushed level design and awful bosses. i love it.

  • drakengard (ps2)
    there are a million enemies and they’re all the same and you will fight them for a thousand years across maps that are all lumpy nothing. oh and sometimes u fly on a dragon and it’s not very good. apparently the music is good but i confess i don’t remember it.
    Drakengard  4

  • dynasty warriors (various)
    mowing the lawn but the grass is ye olde chinese warriors.

  • earth defense force 4.1: the shadow of new despair (ps4, pc)
    god this game rules so hard. big and dumb and dumb and big. sometimes when you shoot a whole pile of enemies at once the entire game slows down to like 5 frames a second until all the physics is finished and it is so good. Extremely frugal asset-use is there purely to accommodate the action; nothing feels wasted, everything is rough as hell and it’s beautiful.

  • p.n.03 (gamecube)
    similar to bullet witch the shooting in this is stark and clean and without frills. every A-press fires a shot, so your fire-rate is limited only by how much u don’t want carpal tunnel. and when you do unlock the automatic-fire upgrade, the rate is slower than you can tap until it’s fully upgraded (an enormous time-sink). anyway this game slaps so damn hard, but also it feels like it was put together in about 5 minutes.

honourable mentions:

  • ghost in the shell: standalone complex
    like p.n.03 the action is honest and simple and rustic. unlike everything else all the level design reeks of love and care and artistry and is thus too refined to qualify as true trash, but it is definitely kin to trash, if only distantly and in parts.

  • kingdom hearts
    definitely trash, but in a way that only something really really expensive can be trash. i hate so many things about this game and it’s sequels that I’ve played but also the sound effect for hitting an enemy wearing armour is so so so so so so so so so good.

I’ll add more later but I’m tired and hopefully u get the idea. pls discuss and add your own suggestions.


Bangai-O Spirits

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Devil May Cry 2 (specifically 2, not any of the others): I beat this game so many times. It is a mess.

Chaos Legion is amazing. I still think of the music video on the disc (FLY SO HIIIIIIIGH).


do not disrespect drakengard 1 itt


late 90s-early 00s period fromsoft games like spriggan: lunar verse definitely qualify


i’m still playing enter the matrix and it is both extremely bad and extremely good


I feel like there are a lot of Simple 2000 games that would fit in here but EDF is already of that lineage so that base is covered.

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i always wanted to play Chaos Legion as a kid.

Gungrave Overdose, and Nano Breaker?

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the box is purple…and yellow!

and Gackt!

In the year 22XX, a.k.a. 674 M.A., the Martial Age, 400 years after his defeat (???), a lone swordsman dances his way through the cosmos, returning to earth to realize everyone is, unfortunately, dead

it has ultra-Hong Kong

it has infinite bamboo forests

it has a glowing writeup from someone who, I am told, knows their stuff:

what more could you want from trash action?


I haven’t played Gunvalkyrie but feel like if that belongs we should throw in Omega Boost. Developed by ex-Panzer Dragoon programmers and the Gran Turismo studio (?!?!), it’s a trashy brown and grey gunmetal PD sequel in all but name where you have six degree movement and (in the US version at least) a very late 90s numetal soundtrack. Well, just for the opening FMV and last boss.


I could not remember that name of this. Thank you.

And are we not mentioning Godhand for a reason?

Also I feel like Nightmare Creatures and Rising Zan are important “early” entries if I’m correct in interpreting this thread as being about mid to low budget 3D action games.

Godhand is probably too good for this thread, humble origins be damned


I feel like I played Chaos Legion for like 40 hours during a single rental. It might be the only musou-style game I’ve ever liked, but I really liked it.


Bujingai is amazing because Gackt jumps like he is on wires in a wuxia movie and I love that detail.

It’s amazing how many games in this thread I have copies of because I guess PS2 trash action was a genre for me.


i bought global defence force, the pal version of earth defence force 2 on its day of release because of how much hype it was getting on the ic forums.
i was at the time attending the local college, and it was pretty much the end of the school year and we had no actual work to do, so the course leader let us come in to get our ema forms signed and also let us set up consoles on the projector in the classroom, for big play (back then, projectors were a lot rarer).
so the first time i played any game of that series was in co-op mode, on a big screen. good times~

demon chaos maybe belongs in this thread? it’s kind of like dynasty warriors, only more so, using some kind of trickery to have the ps2 displaying thousands of onscreen enemies. i’d love to see what a sequel on modern hardware might be like


ahaha ‘65535 enemies to kill’

they’re just flexing