God Hand

    Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
    It's a game about punching people.

    Many years ago, the Demon King Angra sought to conquer the world, gathering to him a massive army of demons. But then a hero emerged, possessing the power of God in his arms, and wiped the army out before facing and overthrowing Angra himself. The people named him the God Hand, and when he finally died, one clan devoted itself to watching over the God Hands, and the power within them. Those with that power can be either god or demon...

    ...and yes, by "watch over the God Hands", we mean watch over the man's severed arms.

    It's that sort of game.

    God Hand, a PlayStation 2 Beat'Em Up developed by Clover Studios and released by Capcom, centers around a 23-year-old drifter named Gene. While wandering one day, he finds a young woman named Olivia being attacked by two punks, after the long package in her arms. He tries to fight them off and gets his right arm cut off (with a razor boomerang) for his troubles.

    As thanks for saving her, however, Olivia attaches the package - the right God Hand - to his stump and explains the situation: a group of demons are trying to resurrect the Demon King Angra. Only the one with the power of the God Hand can stop him, and unfortunately for Gene, he just got drafted.[1]

    Despite his complaints, Gene could use a good fight, and so he sets out to stop Angra's resurrection. To do so, he must defeat the Four Devas: Elvis, a fat, obnoxious, cigar-smoking pseudo-Latino pervert; Shannon, a succubus in all but name who lives to sate her desires; Azel, possessor of the left God Hand (or "Devil Hand" as he calls it), Gene's Evil Counterpart and Olivia's ex-fiance (he killed the rest of their clan); and Belze, their leader with very poor taste in suits.

    Despite the above summary, this game has a very goofy sense of humor, which is what sets it apart. Your enemies include a gorilla in a wrestling mask luchador, many, many midgets, a battery-powered giant robot, and a Giant Enemy Crab. The Groin Attack is common, and female enemies are frequently dispatched via spankings. Heck, the mooks are often found dancing.

    Be warned though... this game's Nintendo Hard. Expect to die. Often.

    The Spiritual Successor MadWorld was released for the Nintendo Wii in 2009.

    The game was among the first released under the Ps2 classics section of the Ps N, on October 4th, 2011.

    Has nothing to do with the Five-Bad Band from Berserk, or with the legendary soccer move.

    Tropes used in God Hand include:
    • Acrofatic: Elvis, some of the Fat Bastard mooks.
    • Action Commands: Dizzy an enemy and the circle button lets you launch one of several super attacks. The one on females, by the way? "Spank". Also, the Roulette.
    • Affectionate Parody: Mostly of classic Beat'Em Up conventions, but the game has also been viewed as a parody of Shonen Fighting Series, mainly Fist of the North Star.
    • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: The Grovel special attack has Gene begging for mercy. Because the game is that hard. This resets the difficulty gauge to Level 1 and earns a jeering crowd for the player. Naturally, the special attack has no effect on the game's highest difficulty setting, since it constantly keeps you on Level Die.
    • All There in the Manual: The names of the Mooks that you fight. They're never mentioned anywhere except in the end credits.
    • Amusement Park of Doom: Stage 3 (Shannon's domains) is set on one.
    • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Beating the game gets you three special outfits for Gene: Azel's clothes (called "Devil Hand"), a karate gi and an outfit like Mr. Gold and Mr. Silver wear (called "Carnivale").
    • Artificial Limbs: The sword demon has a sword for an arm.
    • Ass Shove: Midget enemies will try to hit Gene this way; if they succeed, he'll lose a lot of Tension.
    • Asskicking Pose: Simultaneously used and lampshaded by Gene: "You can Wax On, Wax Off all you like, I'm still kicking your ass!"
    • Awesome but Impractical: God Hand is actually more realistic than most games in this sense. Try doing any of the high-flying spinny moves without knowing what you're doing and prepare yourself for the bracing sting of a fist in your face.
    • Awesomeness Meter: The level up gauge determines how powerful enemies are, as well as the amount of cash gained from random drops, and is increased by performing well in combat.
    • Badass Longcoat: Gene.
    • Baleful Polymorph: One of Shannon's attacks turns Gene into a chihuahua for a short period of time.
    • Balls of Steel: Subverted; Mr. Silver's immunity to Groin Attacks is due to having lost them in the war.
    • Batter Up: The powerful "Home Run God" move.
    • Battle in the Rain: Azel and then Angra in Stage 9.
    • Betting Minigame: There's a casino accessible between levels. It's actually the only way to get certain high-level techniques on the first playthrough.
    • Blessed with Suck: Having the God Hand makes you a target and obliges you to kill Angra. And if Gene refuses to play along, Olivia threatens to take back the God Hand. With a hatchet.
    • Boring but Practical: Chain Yanker, the most basic Guard Breaker and roundhouse evade-cancelling.
    • Boss in Mook Clothing: Normal demons are bad enough. The four-armed trident-wielding ones are these. Also, Samurai Jones.
    • Bowdlerise: In true Capcom fashion, any character making a reference to Satan or being the fallen angel himself will get its name changed when brought overseas; Demon King Angra in this case is SATAN (in all caps) in Japan.
    • Bragging Theme Tune One of the best around.
      • God power keeps my pimp hand strong!
    • Breakable Weapons: Ten hits or one throw, and they disappear.
    • But Not Too Evil: In the Japanese version, the Final Boss is Satan himself. Despite the stuff the international version gets away with, they renamed him "Demon King Angra" just to be safe.
    • Bullet Time: Experienced when choosing a move from the God Reel/Roulette/Wheel.
    • Button Mashing: Each of the reaction attacks require the player to mash circle (although any of the 4 face buttons work as well) as fast as they can to inflict maximum damage.
      • However, waggling the left analog stick is also vital in many situations (for example, it saves you from some very painful enemy "grab attacks") ... and to add to the already insane difficulty of Lv3 and Lv Die, you have to waggle the analog stick incredibly fast to avoid being seriously hurt.
    • Cherry Tapping: "Poke of God", which can only be used against the demon enemies when they would go down from the next attack, regardless how weak. As can largely be expected, it consists of Gene leaning forward, poking the hellspawn with his index finger, the enemy disintegrating as they normally do when they die, capping it off with a Laugh Track while Gene showboats.
    • Combat Pragmatist: Gene doesn't hold back much.
    • Confusion Fu: "My style is impetuous!". Despite the credit's claims though, while Gene has a wide variety of strange moves open to him, God Hand is one of the most methodical beat-em-ups, with most of the crazy moves being Awesome but Impractical or having specific places to be used.
    • Creative Closing Credits: Featuring the main character singing about all his badass powers and dancing with all the enemies in the game.
    • Damage Sponge Boss
    • Dancing Theme
    • Death of a Thousand Cuts: One of the most practical way fighting any enemy is by doing quick jabs, and, of course, imagine Gene doing ATATATATATATATATATATA whenever you get the chance to pummel every single enemy you encounter.
      • There's even a Roulette move called 100 Fists, and animates pretty much exactly as Kenshiro's Hokuto Hyakuretsuken.
    • Degraded Boss: Conchita returns from the dead to back up Afro Kung-fu in his boss fight.
      • Dr. Ion returns in stage 7-1, with no forewarning.
    • Did You Just Dragon Kick Cthulhu's Ass Into the Milky Way?
    • Die, Chair, Die!: Boxes and barrels are not only there to hold goodies, but also make fantastic weapons, allowing you to do significant damage from a surprising distance.
    • Difficult but Awesome: Some moves, with Yes Man Kablaam and Granny Smacker being foremost.
    • Dulcinea Effect: Kind of why Gene is in this whole mess to begin with; he rescued Olivia from two thugs, lost his arm as a result, and was saddled with the God Hand. Even so, the player gets a lot of bonus coins for rescuing civilians.
    • Dual Boss: The Three Evil Stooges the second time, as well as in the fighting ring if you trigger more than one of the icons.
    • Dungeon Bypass: It is often possible to simply run past enemies and to the "next area" gate. While it hurts your end of level score (you killed less mooks), it's often well worth the saved resources, especially when dealing with a Boss in Mooks Clothing, who still counts as one kill at the end.
    • Dynamic Difficulty: Fight well, and the difficulty goes up. Get beaten up, and it goes down. More enemies beaten at high difficulties mean more money at level's end. 50,000 if you never die.
    • Easy Mode Mockery: If you select the Easy difficulty, Gene will mock you by saying, "What, you want me to hold your hand or something?".
    • Eleventh-Hour Superpower: You get both God Hands for the final battle.
    • Elite Mook: The demons that randomly spawn from the bodies of defeated mooks are much stronger and faster than the average mook, tend to evade you if they start taking a beating (leading to him taking longer to defeat), and sometimes they simply disappear once you trigger the God Hand's powers, just to come back again right in front of you after you get back to normal.
    • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: As surprising as it sounds, the demons seem to be very close. After Elvis' death, Shannon (who gave him more shit than anyone) is visibly grief-stricken for a split second before pretending she doesn't really care, and Belze chews out Azel after the latter makes a comment about Elvis being too weak, saying "You do not speak ill of a fallen member of this group!". Maybe it's just because Elvis is such a nice guy.
    • Everything's Better with Monkeys: Pro-wrestling monkeys, at that. Theres actually a zipper on the back. Really, it's just a demon disguised as a human disguised as an ape disguised as a luchador (which makes about as much sense as anything else in this game).
    • Evil Hand: Sort of. Azel was pretty evil to start with, but the Devil Hand gave him superpowers to be evil with.
    • Excuse Plot: Even the characters joke about how ridiculous it is.
    • Expy: Most of the standard enemies look like they walked of the set of Final Fight.
      • The standard thugs are dressed like Bred/Dug.
      • The skinny knife guys dress and fight like El Gado/Hollywood.
      • The first fat enemy encountered looks like a small version of Mr Heart. Also all the fat enemies have a charge attack like G.Oriber.
      • The female enemies with whips are ones to dominatrices commonly found in other brawlers like Double Dragon, Streets of Rage, etc.
    • Extremity Extremist: You can customise Gene's moveset this way.
    • Fake Difficulty: Most glaringly, the special techniques won as prizes in the casino; IF you are lucky enough to win a prize ticket, there is a chance you will get a 'joke' box with nothing. You're not allowed to leave the casino with tickets in hand to save, either. Additionally, the random factor involved from enemy drops and demon appearances is a noted polarizer for those who love and those who hate the game.
    • Fan Service: Olivia is unashamedly provocative, and as you play the game you unlock various pictures of her doing random, mundane things. Also, Shannon. She does a poledance the first time you met her. You also get to spank every female enemy in the game.
    • Fat Bastard: One type of mook.
      • Don't forget Elvis.
    • Finishing Stomp: Available as a normal Action Commands and a Limit Break.
    • Five-Bad Band:
    • Friendly Enemy: Gene and Elvis have some great interactions, even if they are fighting to kill each other. When Elvis dies, Gene (a jerkass) is actually quite sad that he's not going to be around anymore. Gene also gets quite upset with Shannon when she speaks poorly of Elvis after his death.
    • Foreign Cuss Word: Elvis sure likes to swear in Spanish.
      • Which is admittedly some of the funniest parts in the game. Where else are you going to fight a boss whose basic taunt is to call you a cabrón (bastard) and puta (whore)?
        • Even better when he's turned full-demon, and still swears at you in Spanish.
    • Four Is Death: In the Dynamic Difficulty, after 3 is "Level Die".
    • Giant Space Flea From Nowhere: And it's half the fun.
    • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Mooks get these when a demon shows up.
    • God Is Good: It was very helpful of the big guy to donate his arms to smack Sata- I mean *Angra* around.
    • Gratuitous Spanish: Elvis, obviously.
    • Groin Attack: Very, very common. You get to do it to a gorilla, for cripe's sake.

    Don't act like you don't like the Ball Bustah! (Ball Bustaaaah!)

    • Hammerspace: Olivia's hatchet seems to live there.
    • Hard Gay: Q and A a.k.a. Mr. Gold and Mr. Silver, the first Sub Boss fight. Yes, they're extremely muscular, and they speak with lisps.
    • Hellish Pupils: Belze, the leader of the Four Devas, has freakishly silvery-white eyes.
    • Hoist by His Own Petard: The tall mooks will try to grab and suplex Gene, but countering it allows Gene to counter-suplex them for pain. The gorilla luchador can slam Gene into the ground before attempting to jump on him. Dodging this part will hurt the gorilla.
    • Holding Back the Phlebotinum: Gene uses the Deistic Brace to restrain the power of the God Hand, which-once released-makes him Nigh Invulnerable. Azel is able to control the release of his God Hand purely by will.
    • Hyperactive Metabolism: Gene readily consumes fruit to recover health. His life bars are increased by using fruit smoothies.
      • And he increases his Tension/God Hand meter by eating pizza/curry, depending on the version.
    • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: Level 1, Level 2, Level 3 and Level Die.
    • Image Song: The silly yet awesome credit theme.
    • Incredibly Lame Pun: How the Mad Midget Five introduce themselves.
    • Intimate Healing: Subverted: When saving a civilian in stage 4, she kisses Gene but it refills his God Hand meter instead of his life bar. On a related note, Gene appears to recover his God Hand meter anytime women are involved, from the bikini-picture pick-up to Elvis' girlie magazine.
      • Gives the term 'Tension Meter' a whole new meaning.
    • Invulnerable Attack:
      • Roulette moves, once executed, make Gene untouchable. Just remember you're not invulnerable while selecting a move.
      • Invincible Fist, as might be evident, also grants Gene invulnerability during its startup.
    • Jiggle Physics: Booooooooouncy...
    • Just Hit Him: You can invoke or defy this by customising Gene's moveset appropriately and both have their uses.
    • "Just Joking" Justification: At one point, Gene mocks Elvis for his baldness, and is surprised when Elvis takes it badly.

    Gene: Man, you're a little big to be the sensitive type.

    • "Kick Me" Prank: Gene starts with a "Kick Me" sign that falls off when he uses his god powers for the first time. Keeping it on for the entire game is a common Self-Imposed Challenge and a requirement for unlocking some of the songs for the music player.
    • Kick the Dog: Shannon literally does this if she connects with one of her spells that turn you into a puppy.
    • Kick Them While They Are Down: You can make Gene stomp on downed enemies.
    • Lampshade Hanging: TONS of it, but special mention has to go to Gene's comment upon his first encounter with Elvis at the end of stage 1: "Finally, a boss fight!"
    • Laugh Track: Accompanies some attacks, mostly the numerous Groin Shots and the Poke Of God described above.
    • Lethal Joke Characters: The Mad Midget five have a really goofy introduction and are quite silly in general, but keeping track of five fast enemies that can stun you almost instantly can be really difficult if you haven't gotten used to crowd control.
    • Let's Play: One of the best. And by a guy named Kung-Fu Jesus no less!
    • Limit Break: The God Hand power upgrade and the God Reels special attacks. Unleashing the power of the God Hand makes all your attacks unblockable and undodgeable, makes all of your attacks come out at super speed, gives you a fairly large damage bonus... and makes you absolutely invulnerable, to the point that even the Bonus Boss can't hurt you. The God Roulette/Reels give you special moves ranging from a Groin Shot to the Hundred Crack Fist. Which you are also invulnerable while performing.
    • Martial Arts Do Not Work That Way: Both subverted and upheld. Gene will usually get his ass kicked if you use showy moves wrongly. Mooks? Not so much.
    • Meaningful Name:
      • Ravel and Debussy, the rock duo from hell, are possibly named after composers Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy. Being impressionists, their styles were radical for their time, though nowhere near as radical as God Hand's musicians.
      • Belze, his name is much like Beelzebub, and he turns into a giant demon bug.
      • Angra comes from Angra Mainyu.
    • Mecha-Mooks: Just about everyone in Level Four, up to and including the boss Dr. Ion.
    • Mercy Invincibility: Nope!
    • Mirror Boss: Azel. The 51st battle in the fighting ring is Gene with both God Hands.
    • Monster Arena: An arena which contains optional fights for one-time rewards.
    • Monster Clown: A few of them appear in Shannon's territory.
    • Mook Chivalry: Enemies are less aggressive when they're offscreen, but this becomes less true the better you fight.
    • Musical Spoiler: The dissonant musical themes that play every time you encounter a demon.
    • Neck Snap: Subverted, as Cobra Twist looks like this but needs multiple tugs and isn't even a One-Hit Kill.
    • Nintendo Hard: You have unlimited continues. You're going to need every last one of them because when you fight well, the enemies level up instead of you. The enemies. Level. Up.
      • After beating the game on easy/normal mode, which is already ball-bustlingly hard, you unlock hard mode. Yes, hard mode on a Nintendo Hard game. And you don't start on a NG+ either, oh no... you lose everything you had on the other difficulty, and have to start from the absolute beginning. Yes, that means using those terrible early-game techniques and roulette moves you get given until you reach later stages.
      • Hard mode is simply the same game except stuck the highest difficulty, Level Die... ever wondered why it was given that name? Well, try getting past the first two mooks you see in Stage 1-1. Remember these guys? They did this... several million times. And so did everyone else.
    • Noble Demon: For a demon, Elvis is a really nice guy
    • Offhand Backhand: How Gene counters attacks from behind if you hit the action command.
    • Off With Their Heads: "More beheadings than a guillotine: Head Slicer!
    • Old Master: The Great Sensei, who will kick your ass.
    • One-Winged Angel: Every enemy has a chance of doing this, in that since they are all actually demons, it stands to reason that some of them will return to their true form upon the defeat of their human one, which is bad. Also, all of the Devas except for Azel, who has a Limit Break to make up for it.
    • Orphaned Punchline: "You're not Alexander".
    • Painting the Fourth Wall: One part has you deflecting cannonballs back to a ship that has the PlayStation 2 face buttons painted onto its side, corresponding to the cannons firing at Gene.
    • Paper Fan of Doom: One of the weapons Gene can pick up. Not very strong though.
    • Pass the Popcorn: When Shannon starts swinging around the pole, Gene is seen sitting by a table, drinking a beer before their first battle.
    • Perfect Play AI: Averted. Though it comes pretty damn-near close on Level Die.
    • Playboy Bunny: One of Olivia's outfits.
    • Power-Up Letdown: Sushi increases length of your square combo by 1, but as God Hand mode means you spam your square combo at insane rates, you will be doing less damage overall because it takes you longer to get to the final (usually more powerful) attack. The game does allow you to remove moves set to the 5th and 6th additional slots you can buy though, so it's not like you're stuck with a longer combo forever when you buy them.
    • Power Fist: No prizes for guessing. Yes, we are talking about The Hero.
    • The Power of Rock: One recurring boss is a demonic guitarist, joined in one fight by his rhythm guitarist and drummer.
    • Pretty in Mink: Olivia's outfit is trimmed with white fur around the shoulders.
    • Prongs of Poseidon: Trident Demon.
    • The Psycho Rangers: The Mad Midget Five are a parody.
    • Pummel Duel: Trope Namer, and arguably the Trope Codifier/Trope Maker for video games in its usage of a Quick Time Event to start it up and keep it going.
    • Punch-Punch-Punch Uh-Oh: Gene vs. Felix when they first meet.
    • Punched Across the Room: Just one of the many things Gene can do to bad guys with the God Hand.
    • Purple Is the New Black: Belze.
    • Puzzle Boss: The Gorilla has all the strength you would expect from a gorilla even though there is a zipper on his back... and will quickly kill Gene with grapples that can't be interrupted by action commands until major damage is alreddy done, but he will quickly lose his stamina or fall down if he attempt to chase Gene, easily being punished.
    • Quirky Miniboss Squad: The Three Evil Stooges and the Mad Midget Five.
    • Random Number God: Low on health and need a food item? You'll probably not get it.
    • Rated "M" for Manly
    • Rubber Band AI: See Dynamic Difficulty above
    • Sarcasm Failure: Gene's response to the Mad Midget Five's introduction is a flabberghasted "...Douchebags!"
      • It was so freaking weird, he didn't even bother to try.
    • Satan: Final boss. Angra Mainyu, or Ahriman, is basically Satan in Zoroastrianism. Or at least how he's portrayed here, he is, especially with how the radio tells you that he was an angel who "fell from the sky" and then raised an army of demons to conquer the world and possibly Heaven in his spite.
    • Self-Imposed Challenge: "Kick Me", though the "Kick Me Sign Run" actually unlocks something.
    • Sentai: The Mad Midget Five are a parody of this.
    • Shout-Out: To both American pop culture and Capcom's other franchises alike. And needless to say, every scene with Elvis will always be accompanied with a reference to Elvis Presley.
    • Single-Stroke Battle: Daisy Cutter looks like this. Azel kills the Three Evil Stooges this way.
    • A Sinister Clue: Azel having the left God Hand.
    • Skippable Boss: Hi, Tiger Joe! Bye, Tiger Joe!
    • The Social Darwinist: Azel full stop.

    Azel: "In a world where only the strong survive, only the strongest of the strong rule."

    • Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Subverted; if Elvis had more health, he'd be much harder than Shannon or Belze, who have slower, more predictable patterns. Belze has a grab attack that does no initial damage and might as well be called "Here, let me help you kill me." Several sub-bosses are also harder than the end bosses.
    • Sorting Algorithm of Weapon Effectiveness: Subverted. While some moves have versions that deal more damage, not every move that is available later is definitely superior.
    • Sound-Coded for Your Convenience: Hearing the battle cries of the thugs will tell you how far they are from you.
    • Spiritual Successor: God Hand is said to be a better 3D version of Final Fight than either of the actual 3D Final Fight games (one which was a competitive fighting game, and other a Grand Theft Auto-clone).
    • Stripperiffic: Shannon, who acknowledges it by mounting a pole before you fight her.
    • Sub Boss: At least one per level, usually more.
    • Suplex Finisher: Gene can counterattack enemies who grapple him by suplexing them.
    • Team Shot
    • Terrible Trio: Conchita, Felix and Bruce. Also the Goldfish Poop Gang: the game officially refers to them as "The Three Evil Stooges".
    • There Was a Door: All the small wooden doors can be opened. But sometimes doing a flying kick through it to see the five bad guys inside just feels so much cooler.
    • Too Dumb to Live: One Mook, after having his buds hit out a window, obeys Gene's gesture to stand in front of it...
    • Too Kinky to Torture: Shannon.
    • Training Dummy: The practice ring where you can try out new moves has this.
    • Turns Red: Just about every enemy can turn red if hit hard enough or taunted. It makes them hit harder, too, but makes them more aggressive and predictable. It's also a great way to single out enemies and take them out one by one instead of drawing the attention of an entire group of enemies at once by moving too close to them.
    • A Twinkle in the Sky: Gene's more powerful God Roulettes usually ends with the enemy being launched into orbit.
      • Dragon Kick your ass into the Milky Way!
    • Unstable Equilibrium: Doing well, though it gives you harder enemies, also gives more cash from defeating more of said harder enemies, which in turn allows you to buy more items and techniques.
    • Unusual Weapon Mounting: One mook type is a Fat Bastard with a cannon on his back who has to prone to fire it.
    • Villainous Harlequin: Shannon.
    • "Wake-Up Call" Boss: Gold and Silver. If dying about twenty times in the first stage didn't pound it into your head by this point, these guys will make damn sure that you know you're playing a Nintendo Hard game. And they can use the Groin Attack too. Silver is, in addition, immune to groin attacks (trying them gives a dull "thunk"0; after the fight, examining him reveals, as Gene puts it, "He must've lost his balls in the war.").
    • Weak but Skilled: You as Gene. The ~80% of the time when God Hand Unleash and Reel/Roulette moves aren't available, even simple mooks can kick your ass very fast. This is no place for horsing around. Of course, the tables are turned when his powers are available.
    • What Are You Looking At?: After any of the human characters are rescued, they give you fruit then just stand there staring.
    • Why Won't You Die?: One kind of mook tends to shout "Die already!" when taunted.
    • Wrestler in All of Us: Gene busts out a suplex or two here and there, though considering the ridiculous breadth of fighting styles (drunken boxing!) and special moves (celestial baseball bat!) available to him, it's not that out of place.
    • X Meets Y: It is Final Fight meets Fist of the North Star meets Devil May Cry.
    • You All Look Familiar: Lampshaded when you rescue two slaves from the demons that were punishing them; one was punished for disobeying orders, while the other was punished for "looking like that guy".
    • You Get Knocked Down, You Get Back Up Again: Mooks won't hit a downed Gene. Gene on the other hand...
    • You Will Not Evade Me: Chain Yanker allows you to do this.
    1. Or would that be "grafted"?