Vendor Trash

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

Vendor Trash is a kind of item found mostly in RPGs, but it can appear in other genres. This item doesn't heal you or buff you, it can't be equipped, it doesn't harm the enemy when you throw it, it won't open the Sealed Cave of the Sidequest or encourage the palace guard to finally let you see the king, and it can't be combined with other items to do any of the above. In fact, having it does nothing but take up space in your inventory. You might as well throw it in the trash.

But wait a second - one man's trash is another man's treasure, and didn't the shopkeeper tell you We Buy Anything?

Vendors throughout the realm will pay money for useless trinkets like that! Money. Money that you can use to buy something actually useful (maybe). Sometimes a respectable amount, too, depending on the nature of the item. In rare cases, the Vendor Trash actually appreciates in value throughout the game!

This will often take the form of gold or jewels, if those things don't constitute the Global Currency. The term Vendor Trash can also refer to the weak items and equipment that accumulate in your inventory as you progress through the game (especially by fighting Random Encounters), and that you inevitably sell off in bulk to the first shopkeeper you see once your bag starts becoming full. It can frequently be Justified if the Vendor Trash is some sort of valuable treasure item like a jeweled ring or a bar of gold, or anything else that could reasonably be considered valuable in Real Life. Vendor Trash also offers an opportunity for clever World Building if the player finds out what the merchants actually do with the things you sell them. (But those said, Indeed, vendor trash types of items can become rather silly when they really are useless things which it seems like no one at all would have any use for, ever.)

The examples here can be both intentional and unintentional.

This is often used to avoid the Money Spider trope.

But don't be too hasty to sell it, because you might need it to complete a Chain of Deals later. Just don't start a rumor it can be used for a hidden event.

Examples of Vendor Trash include:

Action Adventure

  • The various Treasures in Okami, most of which was pottery and figurines. Issun even recommends selling them, because what else would Physical God Amaterasu need them for?
    • As are most of the fish you fish up in the Fishing Minigame. However, considering Ammy still eats and pees, one wonders why she can't just eat the fish.
    • If you collect all 100 Stray Beads you get the game's Infinity Plus One Weapon. In the sequel, Okamiden, they're the cheapest type of Vendor Trash you can get.
  • The Legend of Zelda has a few examples of this in the cel-shaded games. The Wind Waker introduced a character who accepted a monster-dropped Vendor Trash item for rewards above simple cash. However, this was never expressly stated in the dialogue with him.
    • And in Phantom Hourglass, there's a whole line of treasure items (Goron Amber, Ruto Crown, etc.) that are nothing but Vendor Trash. The exact amount for each item varies from game to game and there is a way to trade these items between games to increase your profit.
      • In Spirit Tracks they were changed to be useful to make new train parts, but still perfectly good as vendor trash if you didn't need more of that part.
    • Skyward Sword also has a whole slew of random treasures and bugs that can be used to upgrade your items (the treasures) and enhance potions (bugs) but they can also be sold off to the correct NPCs at certain times.
  • Castlevania: Symphony of the Night had an array of different jewels which you could only sell to the Librarian for cash.
    • In the Saturn version they could be equipped as rings to power up the Jewel Sword, but it's not worth it.
    • Repeated in Harmony of Dissonance, though the things are so rare you have to wonder why they bothered. Portrait of Ruin and especially Order of Ecclesia have more varied vendor trash, though they also have (non-repeatable) quests.
  • In Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, you can find various junk items in the garbage disposal room, including dummy arms, bird shit, dead rats, TV Guides, (software) bug lists, and the occasional ration.
  • Basically spoofed in The Game of the Ages, where you struggle to sell an old life preserver you found. You eventually get a single coin for it, a coin that proves essential.

Collectible Card Game

  • In Collectible Card Games, there are often "trade bait" cards that look good and/or are rare, but actually aren't good- these can usually be traded for much better cards.
  • The Shadowrun Card Game included the a gun whose specific purpose was as vendor trash so you could buy a better gun.

Edutainment Game

  • In Oregon Trail II and up, you can buy many useless items such as butter churns (useless even if you have milk cows), cast iron stoves, furniture, china, bags of beads, certain folk medicines and spices, sacks of sugar (you don't seem to use them), gun holsters (which don't protect you from accidental gunshots) etc, that serve no purpose other than to make your wagon heavier and increase the risk of tipping over. Then again, you can trade them for essentials later.
    • They can also be seen as a self-imposed challenge by making the game more historically accurate, and bringing things that would only be useful when you get there.
    • On the historic trail in real life, it was not uncommon to bring settlers' effects, only to abandon items mid-journey due to their weight. Eventually, hauling grandfather clocks cross-country becomes impractical.

Fighting Game

  • Pretty much all of the best items in Dissidia Final Fantasy require the trading of various vendor trash items, the majority of which can only be generated by battling specific characters or won in the game's Duel Coliseum. The best of the best items are often created from combining the items you've already generated along with even better vendor trash.

First Person Shooter

  • While everything you find in Borderlands is either money, equipment or ammo the fact that most of the equipment is randomly generated and usually a few levels below you (if it's even a type of weapon you use or a class mod compatible with your class), most of it is vendor trash.
    • In fact, there is a unique gun in the game which has the sole special power of being good vendor trash.
  • The majority of stealables in the Thief games. Justified in that, well, Garret is a thief: The entire point of the games (at least initially) is that he steals valuable trinkets for a living. You can't pay the rent with arrows and smoke bombs, at least not in a way that won't attract guard attention.


  • Kingdom of Loathing has an "autosell" function that lets you sell just about any item in your inventory for money. Two items in particular are only useful for their autosell value: "Valuable trinkets" and "fat stacks of cash" (the latter are useless because the Global Currency is "meat").
    • However, after years of uselessness, valuable trinkets have recently gained a useful function and are no longer vendor trash. Other Vendor Trash items like "fancy seashell necklaces" can be bought to enable one to convert non-exchangeable currencies into the Global Currency.
      • And in the limited-time content of Christmas 2008 the "fat stacks of cash" have also gained a valuable use. Seems that in Kingdom of Loathing nothing stays Vendor Trash forever!
        • Useless Powder, however, remains... well... useless.
    • Additionally, so-called "worthless" items of all types are useful to The Hermit, and indeed, you must use them to complete several story quests.
      • The joke being that Valuable Trinkets are near-worthless, while Worthless Trinkets are valuable.
  • In MMORPG Ragnarok Online Vendor Trash also remains as the main source of income. Although some of those items can be used in certain quests, their main utility is being sold or exchanged for other items.
    • Ragnarok is an interesting case as the usefulness of some items varies greatly with your character, playstyle and knowledge of the game (you often won't know what an item's good for until you need it). Sometimes, the vendor that takes what's trash to you can be another player. It also has inversions, items that are incredibly useful to the player (or other players), e.g. cards (used to upgrade equipment), which sell to NPC vendors for the lump sum of 10 Zeny, but are often worth literally a million times that.
    • Ragnarok has also been averting this for years in all the millions and millions of hats you can make. Got a ton of rotten bandages from killing zombies? Why, 300 of those make a hat! Got trunks? Make Sakkats! It can become ridiculous when your Kafra inventory is full of Vendor Trash you just can't part with because only a few hundred more will make you another hat!
  • World of Warcraft goes as far as color-coding its Vendor Trash. If you see an item with its name in gray, you can rest assured its only purpose in the game is to be sold to vendors. This was eventually lampshaded with the item "Goldenscale Vendorfish," a rarely caught fish which sells for an impressive amount of money for its item level.
    • And some so-called vendor trash can be sold to vendors for more than even legendary weapons, though these are fairly rare items contained within the daily fishing quest grab-bag. The Beautiful Glass Eye goes for 18 gold pieces, while the Ancient Coins go for 25!
    • Especially in the expansion, some of these items are used to avert the Money Spider trope. Humanoid enemies drop money which varies in amounts, while beasts and other non-sentient foes drop body parts. Not that this stops beasts sometimes eating surprisingly high-quality weapons and armour...
    • It's not uncommon for players to actually use some of those grey-colored vendor trash items when no other alternative exists. Most shoulder gear of remotely acceptable quality is few and far between under level 25, and for those underleveled players, a pair of rotting pauldrons or disheveled shoulderguards is better protection than nothing at all.
  • Averted in City of Heroes. Not a single item can be considered to be truly vendor trash as they are all useful, if not to the player receiving them they will be to someone else. The Consignment House and Black Market exist so that players can sell and purchase these items from other players.
    • Although there's still some stuff (Training/Dual Origin enhancement drops at some levels) that is essentially useless, since it's outclassed by gear that's easier to get for that level. Recent changes revolved around removing most of those kind of drops.
  • In Guild Wars, there's an entire class of NPCs who trade weapons, armor, or other useful items for otherwise useless items. Some collectors offer explanations, but not all of them. And then there are merchants who buy virtually anything.
    • They've taken the idea further in the past year or so by adding Nicholas, the NPC who wants different items weekly (or daily in pre searing) in exchange for consumables. He nearly always asks for Vendor Trash. He, at least, gives a detailed explanation as to what use he has for such a bizarre item.
  • The net-based game Forum Warz has an entire item category of vendor trash called "Useless Junk". The value of the items ranges from the marble, which sells for only 1 unit of currency, to the nude Mary Magdalene, which sells for over 5000. To avoid quest items being mistaken for useless junk, they cannot be sold.
    • Why is it necessary to make quest items unsellable? Because otherwise you couldn't tell the difference - many of the quest items look, from the descriptions, utterly pointless...
  • The MMORPG Tales of Pirates has Trade Items, which can only be used for buying in one port and selling it for more money in a different port.
    • Yohoho Puzzle Pirates, similarly, features Fruit (everything else is useful for, well, a trade, since tradeskills are literally half of the game).
  • RuneScape has a lot of vendor trash, such as goblin armour (too small for you to wear) and unenchanted jewelry. However, there are also things that are useful if you're on a certain quest and never again, such as beads (technically, goblin armour is also used in a quest, although even then you have to paint it first). Those things are useful for selling to people who are working on the quest that requires that item, or just selling to the shopkeeper. Some minigames even reward the player with Vendor Trash.
    • PKing in Runescape works interestingly now. Certain items held by a PC you kill are dropped when they die, but others have their value assessed and a piece of ancient pottery with an equivalent value drops instead. We're not sure why this is.
  • Maple Story has these in spades, with a very appropriate name of "etc items." While some etc items are needed for quests, there are many others that will never be used for anything but selling. Most are pretty standard but there are a few that are really bizarre like soiled rags, a fish's thoughts, werewolf toenails, and zombie teddy bears.
  • The now-unsupported MMO Tabula Rasa avoided the brunt of this trope by giving characters enormous amounts of backpack space and making truly useless items almost nonexistent (but rather valuable to compensate). Virtually all non-mission-critical items can, at the absolute least, be decomposed into their modular "stat bonuses" as well as the secondary resource needed to modify and install those modules, giving a distinct use to even the crappiest low-level gear in the game.
    • These two aspects together led to the very common and rather comical sight of the your character harboring several dozen fully-functional and loaded weapons (ranging up to chainguns and RPGs), two whole characters' worth of body armor in addition to their own, hundreds of grenades in all 53 flavors, and tens of thousands of rounds of spare ammunition for weapons the player cannot even equip. Any given low-level character could probably level a small town if they detonated the sheer volume of unstable materials they regularly lug around.
  • Most of the in game economy of EVE Online is based on the production, selling, buying, and transportation of vendor trash in the form of commodities other than the ships and upgrades that players can actually use. Though very little is actually useless, as almost everything in the game is useful to someone (for example, player-run space stations require certain resources that individual players will find useless).
  • Glim in Echo Bazaar. It's one of very few common goods that can't be used to craft high-level items, and some of the storylets give you LOTS of it.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic includes a feature in which you can have your current companion to go and sell all the vendor trash in your inventory while you continue to play.
  • Battlestar Galactica Online is guilty.

Platform Game

  • Pokecapn's Let's Play of Sonic Unleashed actually averts the trope - normally, the Sun and Moon Medals, and the various extras, are kind of arbitrary and seem sort of worthless, even if they're not. But Medibot assigns each one a unique identity, and suddenly they have value (especially when they contain things like first editions of first drafts of well-known books, or the hopes and dreams of every child in Kentucky).

Real Time Strategy

  • In RHDE, units sleep in only the first three beds. If you steal more from your opponent, you can't use them. Fortunately, you can sell them.


  • In Alpha Man, many items are vendor trash, such as the slinky, the PortaPotty, the cyclotron, and the prosthetic leg. Other items appear to be vendor trash, only to have useful purposes, like the Home Movie Projector that puts creatures to sleep, the Massage Unit that relieves fatigue, and the Bottle of Seltzer that is effective against fire-based creatures.
  • In ADOM there are several clearly useless items, like the Scroll of Cure Blindness (to use it you must be able to read it, spot the problem?) or the si. However, there is also a Potion of Uselessness which grants the player a random artifact if thrown on the Level 49 of the main dungeon. It can only be used for this. As in Nethack, shops can run out of money - however, they eventually renew.
    • The si isn't useless - it's a self replicating artifact that comes in useful on the ice level for moving around and can be wielded as an improvised weapon against enemies that damage/destroy non-artifact weaponry.
  • Dwarf Fortress has a lot of this in the form of enemy equipment - you can't wear most of the clothing that other races drop, seeing how it's too big or narrow for your dwarves. You can use most of the weapons, but they're usually poor-quality compared to what you can make locally or buy. However, depending on the material that it's made out of traders will sometimes give you quite a bit of money for it. Metal items can also be melted down, and the junk left behind on a battlefield acquired the Fan Nickname of "Goblinite, the fourth iron ore". As a result, goblin invaders starting to turn up in leather armour in a later version had the perverse effect of making defending the fortress harder on metal-poor maps.
    • Up until the v0.47 update in 2014, nearly every craftable item except furniture, weapons, ammunition and clothing/armour was this: Toys, musical instruments, jewellery and other items served only to be bartered for more food and other actually useful stuff brought by traders, and as a way to use up the heaps of stone that accumulated whenever the player dug out some new rooms. The new tavern system implemented a use for drinking vessels and musical instruments, dwarven children have started to actually play with toys and adults will wear jewellery and other accessories so they're no longer literal examples, but in practice most forts will still end up manufacturing much more than they can use and selling the surplus.
    • This is true of Fortress Mode. In Adventure Mode, you can sell anything to most merchants, but different currencies are not interchangeable between different towns, so selling a bunch of stuff usually just nets you money with very limited use. But the money can still be thrown for massive damage.
  • Dungeon Crawl makes sure shops don't buy anything, specifically to avert this trope; the author thinks lugging mountains of vendor trash back to the shops just isn't a fun game mechanic. Besides, apart from cursed and/or damaged equipment and a few malevolent pieces of jewelry, there actually isn't anything truly useless—your lvl 20 Troll Monk might not need that book of lvl 1 completely useless spells, or that potion of poison, or that +2 dagger—but for some other type of character those things might be very valuable.
    • The only "vendor" who accept anything is god Nemelex Xobeh. Buy sacrificing all the trash you find you make day you get magic deck of cards come sooner and also determinate what kind of cards will be in it.
  • Nethack restricts things by limiting the amount of cash each storekeeper actually has to buy your junk. Once that's depleted, the value of the trash is vastly depleted and you can only get store credit. General Stores are the friends here, where you can sell all the random encounter crud - including the elf armor, the elf weapon, the elf shield and the elf corpse. (Well, it beats eating it - sometimes...)
    • The real money in Nethack lies in gems - but you have to have magically identified which are valuable and which are just glass, otherwise the shopkeepers buy them priced as glass, and sell them priced as emeralds, amethysts, dilithium crystals or whatever...
  • Moria had shopkeepers that would purchase unidentified items. In theory, you could stockpile 99 potions of Apple Juice, Slime Mold Juice and Water to get maximum profit (since their unidentified form is always the same from game to game.) However, trying to sell known vendor trash will offend the shopkeeper. The successor Angband makes it impossible to sell known trash.
  • In the Thief games, anything you pick up and keep that isn't a weapon or used to solve a puzzle is this. In the first two games, the trash is automatically sold for you between missions. In the third, you have to track down fences to sell the loot.
  • The shopkeeper of Dungeons of Dredmor, Brax, will buy anything off you (even the sidequest-completion items, before it was fixed in a patch), but there is nothing in the game that is, by definition, Vendor Trash: it's either equipment, a consummable, or a crafting ingredient. However, if you don't have the relevant craft (Blacksmithing, Alchemy, or Tinkering) or skill set (e.g., booze, etc. when you've got no mana-using abilities or food when you're a Vampire), many items are functionally useless to you, making them effectively Vendor Trash (or Horadric Lutefisk Cube Trash).

Role Playing Game

  • The Pokémon games have such items as Nuggets, Pearls, and Tiny Mushrooms.
    • The Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series has the "Gold Ribbons" and the "Lost Loot".
    • As of FireRed and LeafGreen, Mushrooms are all used in Sevii by the Mushroom Maniac Move Re-Tutor, so the specific Vendor Trash is now mostly Rare Bones (dug up Underground), the classic Nuggets, Star Pieces, and Pearls. Later games have more valuable Vendor Trash like Balm Mushrooms, Big Nuggets, Pearl Strings, and Comet Shards. The most valuable are the Relics found in the Abyssal Ruins (Pokémon Black 2 and White 2) but only the Billionaire in Undella Town will buy them.
      • However, every other Move Relearner in the series takes Heart Scales, and since items can't be sent back to the GBA games, the Mushrooms return to Vendor Trash status in Generation IV.
    • The Star Pieces aren't entirely useless on D/P/Pt, since you can just give them to the guy at Fuego Ironworks in exchange for shards, which are used for getting TMs on Diamond and Pearl, or to pay various move tutors on Platinum.
    • Once you get to the Department Store in each game, you can purchase "Fresh Water" from the rooftop vending machines, which are equally effective as Super Potions, but cost only a fraction of the price. The only disadvantage is that you have to purchase them one at a time.
    • Ethers are also outclassed by Leppa Berries, which have the effect but activate automatically when held by a Pokemon; the player can get a sustainable supply of them with careful gardening. Neither of these two can be purchased from shops, but Ethers fetch a surprisingly high price in resale.
    • To make up for the lack of trainer rematches, Pokémon Black and White added three collectors that will buy certain regular items for more than what you'd usually get and will also give you tremendous amounts of money for rare items you can't sell to anyone else (some of which you only get one of).
    • In Pokémon X and Y, an NPC gives you a Strange Souvenir, hinting it is from an as-yet unknown region (later revealed to be Alola, the setting of Pokémon Sun and Moon. While the Souvenir is interesting, it has no use other than to be sold.
  • The Gold Bars and Dried Bouquets in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door come close, although they did have very marginal other uses. Both could be cooked, which was necessary for 100% Completion, although it wouldn't really make anything worthwhile. Also, the Dried Bouquet restored 1 FP.
    • The Gold Bars were supposed to be money-storage items, though. They sell for slightly less than they are bought for, but when you can only carry 999 coins at a time, you may want to buy a 330-coin Gold Bar and store it instead of letting all those coins you get from enemies go to waste.
  • There are so many of these things in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, it would be impossible to list. Basically, if you could realistically pick up something with one hand—you could put it into your inventory and sell it to someone. The thing was, only a fraction of the items had any use at all.
    • It's possible to find ancient statues in equally ancient ruins that, at first glance, appear to be vendor trash. Selling one to an unsuspecting shopkeeper piques the interest of a collector who employs your services as his personal fetch monkey to complete the set. You could, with the aid of in-character precognition just go directly to the collector however.
      • They did the same thing with another item. Hint: if you're in a fort, be on the lookout for "Shadowbanish Wine".
    • Some of that Vendor Trash may well be the required offering to a certain Daedra Prince (Think Sheogorath and a ball of yarn)
      • There is a quest in the Shivering Isles that requires a pair of calipers and another of tongs. Also, it's apparently legit to loot the houses of people who've tried to kill you. It registers as theft in your Journal, but nowhere else.
    • An aversion for many of the trash/clutter items, though, is that they have trashy monetary values. A fair amount of items sell for nothing at all. Gems and metal nuggets are the more prototypical vendor trash, though their high values mean you're very likely to get ripped off when selling them.
  • In Mount & Blade, enemy drops are useful early on for equipping your character and NPCs; however once you have everybody decked out in the nicest armor drops, enemy drops essentially become Vendor Trash, as do the enemies themselves if you manage to take any prisoners. Prisoners can be recruited to your army, but the chances of that happening are low; the point is moot if your army is at capacity anyway. To sell them, you have to go from town to town until you can find a ransom broker, meanwhile with the prisoners dipping into your food supply. Captured lords and kings can be the most annoying to have to drag around, since the usual ransom brokers won't purchase them from you; you just have to wait until someone makes you an offer for them. There are also items that you can purchase from vendors for the sole purpose of reselling them elsewhere for a profit, some of which have absolutely no function apart from their inherent money-making value.
  • The "Pretty Stone" in the first Kingdom Hearts game. Likewise, the "Mystery Mold" that Randomly Drops from the randomly appearing Black Fungus; which is sold for 9999 cash! Sora apparently isn't curious just what merchants do with magic mushrooms formed from the darkness.
    • Especially when the merchants are kids. And nephews to Donald, no less.
  • In Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: Raidou Kuzunoha vs the Soulless Army, Raidou can acquire "artifacts", such as old coins and pottery, that are only useful when you sell them to Konnou-Ya, the crotchety old owner of the store that shares his name. Given that Konnou-Ya is a pawn shop whenever you're not buying magical elemental bullets and magical booze for your familiars, it's sort of justified.
  • Persona 3 has a similar system. Coins you get by killing the game's Metal Slime are usually worth a lot of money, and some of the items dropped by bosses are only there for you to sell.
    • In Persona 4, your first visit to the only equipment shop has the owner tell you explicitly that items dropped by enemies are useless to you and should be sold to him. A nice touch for those worried about selling anything for fear of missing something later on. As an additional reason to do so, new weapons and armor become buyable if you sell certain amounts of stuff to the shop.
  • Breath of Fire 3 had Antiquities that could be sold to any store for money, or to a specific store for more money. However, one of them (the Flower Jewel) is needed to get a certain master to help your party, so don't sell it.
  • The three statues in Skies of Arcadia were originally used for a Sidequest, but in the remake, Skies of Arcadia Legends, this quest was taken out, and the statues became Vendor Trash. The game also featured plenty of straight examples -- Crystal Balls, Gold Bullion, and the Zivlin Bane treasures, for starters. Daccat's Coin also probably counts, although only one vendor in the game was interested in it. The Discoveries are a somewhat less orthodox usage.
  • The gems in the Fire Emblem series.
  • Mario encounters the Goodie Bag in Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, an item that gives you one coin when used, and never runs out. This can be used to create unlimited wealth (very, very slowly), but Mario is a good citizen and sells it for 555 coins instead, sparing the Mushroom Kingdom the slow devaluation of its coinage and the complete collapse of its economy.
  • Shadow Madness, a little-remembered Playstation RPG, had entire barrels of useless geegaws (farming tools, toys, etc.) that would get you loads of money if sold to specific shops. The game gives you no clue about this.
  • Selling Vendor Trash is your main source of income in Final Fantasy XII. It should be noted that a lot of items are available earlier, cheaper, and/or exclusively if you sell a certain quota of Vendor Trash.
    • FFXII actually adds justification to most vendor trash. Info in the bestiary frequently describes which items a monster drops and what they're used for, making the fact that they sell for decent money more plausible. And there's also a direct correlation between what you sell and what stuff you can buy from the Bazaar.
    • Ditto Final Fantasy XIII, which had loot you could either use for synthesis or selling, certain items give you so little synthesis points, you'd probably be better off selling them (and they'll usually vendor for large amounts if they give you less than fifteen).
  • Subverted in the first Baten Kaitos: Even the vendors don't want your trash. Selling cards you can't use brings in a pittance at best. Your main source of income comes via taking photos of monsters.
    • However, there are a few items (Jill's Jewelry Box, for instance) which can be created in battle and sold for a relatively high price (nothing like a rare photo, of course.) And then there's one of the oddest-ever inversions of Vendor Trash, where a certain item (Small Debt) changes over time to the Large Debt, and then the Snowballing Debt. Attempting to sell the Snowballing Debt will remove 50,000 money from your possession.
  • Chickens, rulers, and protractors in EarthBound. Luckily the game also has a "For Sale" sign which causes random people to wander up to you and buy your things. There's also the semi-rare Meteotite, which is dropped by some enemies and (as the description states) doesn't do anything but can be sold for a high price.
    • And then there's the Insignificant Item...though it actually has a use.
    • The Meteotite appears in the sequel, Mother 3, with the same purpose. Also, there are items such as Nuts (which heal 5 HP when eaten, but can be traded for much better recovery items until chapter 4) and Dolphin Ossicles (which have no purpose other than being sold).
  • Star Ocean the Second Story is an example of the rarer "appreciating value" Vendor Trash, in which it sells (at an incredible price) a bottle of what was translated to "Seltzer". It rapidly increases in value based on the number of squares you've moved since the beginning of the game. It should be noted that this appreciation happens whether or not you own the item, meaning if you want to buy it you'll have to progress far enough that your ability to make money outstrips the time you've spent playing. You can also create it using ultra-rare cooking ingredients.
    • Star Ocean the Second Story also had reverse vendor-trash in the item Bounced Cheque. In order to get rid of it, you had to pay a shopkeeper to take it off you.
    • Hell, half the stuff you make using Item Crafting can be considered Vendor Trash. Many items have little or no use and there are over a thousand of them.
  • Subverted in the obscure Game Boy RPG Great Greed, which contained an item called "TRASH" that took up limited inventory space. Trying to discard TRASH to free up your inventory space would fail with the amusing message "YOU CAN'T LITTER" (the game had an environmentalist theme). In order to get rid of it, you had to pay a shopkeeper to take it off your hands.
  • The Saturn RPG Albert Odyssey (based on the Super Famicom series) had several "mundane" items much like NAMCO RPG Great Greed had—forks and makeup and the like—which differed from the other fantasy setting items—swords and armors and the like.
  • You could collect plenty of vendor trash in Betrayal at Krondor, and some in its lackluster sequel, Return to Krondor. Return was perhaps notable for the fact that gems weren't vendor trash, because the game actually assigned a weight value to money. Vendors would automatically convert your coinage into lighter-weight gems. The large mid-game section where you're free to explore the coastal wilderness near Krondor without any easily-accessible vendors could easily lead to serious weight problems just from all the cash you weren't able to convert to gems (not to mention all the potion-making crap both your wizards were likely carrying around).
  • The Baldur's Gate series has a lot of these sorts of items—mostly non-magical jewelry and gems. However, occasionally, an NPC will have a use for a particular kind of Vendor Trash... and all the people who gleefully sold high-end Vendor Trash—particularly emeralds, star sapphires, rogue stones, diamonds, and other gem types—for large piles of money in Baldur's Gate II were disappointed when they go to Throne of Bhaal and found that there was a real use for them...
  • Dragon Age Origins, its spiritual successor, does something similar. Word of advice, you may not want to sell off your unused gems, crafting supplies, and runes, as they can be used to give you an advantage in the final battle. In fact, the only things that are really safe to sell to vendors are weapons and armor.
  • Dragon Age II reverses it and automatically sorts all unusable loot into the "Junk Items" category, which can be emptied at any shop with a single click on "Sell all junk" button. You can also move useless armor and weapons to Junk to greatly simplify loot selling.
  • Might and Magic RPG games had gems of different colours and value. They did not have any use except for selling them. And in M&M VIII there were 'shop tours': you could buy or sell Tobersk fruit, Tobersk pulp or Tobersk Brandy from various merchants, making some profit. This was too tedious, though, to earn gold that way.
  • In the game Vandal Hearts 2, the bullion (of gold), ingot, and the R (rare) metal serves practically this purpose. They're great to sell off, but no use whatsoever except to add weight (except the R-Metal, which is light). Even worse, there are items that doesn't even sell well, and just adds weight. Of course, there's a niche weapon with a niche skill that relies on your overall weight to damage enemies. You don't discover it until later in the game though, which means, most usually, you have sold those said items...
  • In the .hack// games, end-of-dungeon chests often contain one to three vendor trash items that are very valuable for trading with "other players."
  • The Monster Hunter and Monster Hunter Freedom series. While on missions you can find such rare and valuable items as shiny shells, mountain herbs, and special mushrooms. With a few exceptions, these items serve absolutely no purpose but for cash, and are sold off automatically when the mission ends.
    • Oddly enough, everything else is fair game. You should be fairly used to saving everything because you never know when you'll need it. Even those seemingly useless ROCKS (does 1 damage, same as a paintball) can eventually be used to forge the Basarios series. (High defense but looks like a ton of bricks.)
  • This is your only source of money in The World Ends With You, and the Vendor Trash is about as obvious as it gets—pins called "[number] Yen", with a design featuring that number, and no other purpose. Somewhat justified, as every enemy in the game is actually made from a pin, and presumably Vendor Trash pins are easy to get.
  • In Etrian Odyssey Vendor Trash is your only source of income.
    • Not only that, but the shops' selection increases mostly by selling off various quantities of it.
  • When you're fighting human (or humanoid, anyway) opponents, the Fallout series most definitely falls into this trope, since you can usually scavenge a weapon, a piece of armor, and a trinket or two from hostiles, and they're usually things you either don't need, or already have (or have something better,) leading to huge mounds of Vendor Trash after a fight.
    • An interesting part of the Fallout game economy is that actual cash is relatively limited. It is often easier to trade for vendor trash to make up for what the NPC merchants lack in money. It gives the game's barter system a more realistic feel (in a post-apocalyptic sort of way), as you'll end up with transactions that go along the lines of "four scavenged shot guns for all of your cash, several bottles of hooch, and some ammo".
    • Fallout 3 reinforces this trope with a vengeance, supplying vast amounts of useless to marginally useful clutter around the environment and in containers. You only get one ally to load up with unreadable books and unsmokeable cigarettes, but fortunately stacks of Pre-War Money have zero encumbrance.
    • Fallout: New Vegas describes such items handily as "vendor trash." Some items are bound to personalities and take offense at the player picking up his/her trash.
    • The one saving grace to all that crap comes in the form of the custom weaponry, wherein fairly decent weapons can be fabricated from things that are literally lying around everywhere. One of these custom weapons is the Rock-It Launcher, an, err, unusual weapon that uses clutter as ammunition.
    • Oddly, as many GameMods lampshade, some of the vendor trash get turned into repair items for weapons and armor, which, given pretty much nearly all weapons and armor have been scavenged from the pre war world for use in the post apocalyptic one, maintenance of these items often becomes a constant personal task, and hence many mods make some of the obviously useful (for repairs) trash like "Wonderglue" and "Scrap Metal" usable for item repair because it makes logical sense.
  • Mass Effect 1 sees fit to dump upon the player piles of assault rifles, shotguns, pistols, and sniper rifles, not to mention armor and upgrades for all the above. Most of it is actually sub-par equipment, and a quick check of the weapon or armor's manufacturer by a reasonably experienced player can tell you off the bat which ones are worth keeping before you even check the stats.
    • Mass Effect 2 averts it completely, however: everything you pick up on missions can and will be used in some way.
  • Knights of the Old Republic is equally bad, especially with stims. The bonuses they give don't stack, and are only mildly useful once you've got access to Force abilities. Ditto with medpacks, standard blasters, vibroblades, and such. The second game is a lot stupider about it than the first, leading you to have 5-6 copies of an allegedly "one of a kind" blaster.
  • Planescape: Torment has a lot of vendor trash items, mostly non-magical rings and bracelets, as well as weak weapons dropped off of opponents that you have long since outgrown, that seem to only exist to be sold to the vendors. However, while most plot items are unsellable, a couple are not and it gets very annoying to suddenly need a hammer and prybar but nobody seems to sell them. Luckily, vendors remember what items you sold them and will sell them back, assuming you can remember who you sold them to and that they're in an area you can still return to.
  • Mega Man Battle Network puts an interesting twist on this. The battlechips you start off with, as well as many of the chips you earn early in the game, quickly become useless, filling up your pack with piles of crap chips, and you can't sell ANYTHING. However, you can plunk useless or unwanted chips into Chip Traders, which cough up (hopefully) better chips.
    • Some players actually BUY said chips just to go and pop them back into the machine again.
  • Task Maker and its sequel, The Tomb of the TaskMaker, have several of these, including "Poison" which does bupkis; "old empty chest" which contains nothing; and other objects which can't be used, and have to be sold or discarded.
  • Brain Lord has things like Gold Coins and Silver Bullion, which have no use other than to take up space and be sold. Fortunately, they sell fairly well and you get a rather large inventory, but money isn't exactly hard to come by in the first place.
  • If you play the Memory game in Dragon Warrior 7 for Playstation for any length of time, you will amass a gigantic collection of dung, which gives you a measly 1 gold at the shop and serves no purpose other than attracting enemies (which you really don't need help with).
  • Neverwinter Nights, both played straight and subverted. Certain types of creature always drop a specific body part; fire beetles, for instance, drop fire beetle bellies. Shrubs and piles of rock typically yield fenberries and quartz crystals (though the piles of rock can hide more valuable gems). All of these sell for one gold apiece. But just when you've learned to recognize Vendor Trash in Chapter 1, Chapter 2 changes the rules... Now, there's one vendor who won't deal with you until you give her an item of Vendor Trash (an 'arcane reagent') -- every single time you deal with her—and you can also find out how to use some of them in Item Crafting. But you still collect so many of them that they still by and large count as trash. At the same time, certain rare items from the first chapter, worth holding on to for their use in that chapter's Item Crafting, now themselves become Vendor Trash, showing up everywhere. (But fire beetle bellies remain trash.)
    • Oh, and the books. You can ransack the Pamphlet Shelf for the same dozen or so books the world over. (And the occasional magic scroll.) Once you've read the page of setting-enhancing text once, they become pure Vendor Trash.
    • Can't forget gems, which exist solely to keep money in reserve so that when you die you don't lose too much dough. Admittedly, selling gems for money makes sense, but apart from diamonds (which are used in item crafting) they're rarely worth more than 100gp, which is a pitifully small amount of money when you get up to level 10.
  • This is the quickest means of getting money in Fossil Fighters. You find "Jewel Rocks" over the world, and clean the rocks to sell the jewels inside. However, it ends up being somewhat "normal" in that, in order to claim a Jewel Rock, you must generally win a battle first.
  • One of the most basic ways of making money in Albion. Some predators are hunted for parts that are used for various purposes (like decoration or as an ingredient for medicine). So whenever you're running low on cash, go hunting, pick up a few dozen of these and sell them. Valuables, like gems, also count, except for (non magical) jewelry, which can be equipped for extra protection.
  • White Knight Chronicles averts it hard. Don't sell anything. Ever. Everything you find has a use, be it for upgrading gear, crafting new gear, making Georama parts, or recruiting town residents. And even if you find something you don't think you need, you're better off donating it to the crafting NPC to get access to new recipes than selling it for straight cash.
  • Lampshaded and ultimately subverted in The Bard's Tale; the Bard finds several useless things in the chests and barrels he rummages through, but instead of being lugged around with him, they're automatically converted into silver to line his pockets.
  • The 7th Saga has various gems. Their advantage is that you don't lose them if you get defeated in battle (unlike gold). And yes, you will die in battle.
  • Darkstone has a number of items collectible from the local dungeons which serve absolutely no point to the player. These include a number of weapons and jewelry pieces which, if wielded/worn by the player character, will actually harm them. Their only purpose is to be sold for extra gold.
  • Panzer Dragoon Saga has a lot of Ancient Age things for Edge to find, or even more... mundane things. Like Coolia dung.
  • In Lunar Dragon Song, you have the option of getting experience or vendor trash from killed enemies. Said trash can either be sold directly or used in the delivery miniquests that ask you to give an NPC Twenty Bear Asses.
  • Most equipment that you found in Arcana were worth equipping your characters with, except for the Golden Sword and the Rococo Armor. The sword was made of gold and the armor was made of precious metals studded with gems, so they didn't raise your stats much, but they could be sold for a high price at the equipment shops.
  • Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura has gems, weak enemy weapons, and a wide variety of items that are only useful for certain builds.
  • In Path Of Exile the vendors themselves give you trash. You see, the game works on the barter system and there is no currency. So you can sell items for scraps that eventually combine into something relatively useful like an identify scroll.
  • Spiderweb Software's Avadon Goes so far as to have an additional bottomless pit of a bag that's shared between all of your party members (in addition to their each, individual bags) which is meant solely for vendor trash. Subverted a tiny amount in that there are some things (such as dead limbs) that shopkeepers just won't buy ... Wonder why ...
  • Pandora's Tower: Until I Return to Your Side features books as pure vendor trash. Picking them up copies their contents to the archive, and then they're so useless Mavda will take them off your hands without even asking for confirmation. She'll also buy Beast Flesh from you in bulk to give your excess some value instead of letting it rot, proving that being a minor Plot Coupon and Vendor Trash aren't mutually exclusive categories.
  • Inverted again in Dragon's Dogma . Almost everything is combinable or usable to upgrade equipment. Even seemingly useless quest rewards (like 60 skulls) are often put toward completing later quests (which always give a sizable cash bounty upon completion), so hoard everything!

Simulation Game

  • Animal Crossing revolves entirely around Vendor Trash. You grow it on trees, you fish it out of the river, you pick it up off the beach, you catch it in your net, you dig a fossil out of the ground and have a paleontologist clean it up, and then you sell it all to the raccoon.
  • Elite and games like it (Pirates, Free Space, X, Escape Velocity, etc...) have this as the basis of the merchant and pirate occupations. Buy low, sell high. Typically, of all goods the only one you can use is fuel, if it isn't sold separately from normal goods, and there are contraband goods which are game-influencing in that being caught with it may get you fined or fired upon. The rest differs only in prices and places where prices are high/low.
  • In Frontier versions of Elite it's the same, except there are a few more exclusions (game-relevant goods): two sorts of fuel on the list and useable Chaff, plus Rubbish (what normal goods may become if the ship is hit) and Radioactives (byproduct of military drives) that usually have a negative price (you can jettison them instead, but may get punished for littering in space).
  • Just any Space Sims like Freelancer will have Vendor trash in the form of commodities such as food, fuel, light weapons and even oxygen and water. It's only good for freighter builds, since for everyone else it is a bloody waste of time to loot a tradeship.
  • Much like with Animal Crossing, this is the general route to money in Magicians Quest Mysterious Times. You can collect mushrooms, wild plants, and gemstones to sell them off. However, a large portion of Vendor Trash items can also be used in incantations for magical effects, and many of the gemstones and flowers make good gifts to give to people you want to be your friends.
  • In Nintendogs your dogs can find things in the street. Except for toys and accessories, it's all pretty useless and only good for selling. Things that range froom actual trash like empty juice bottles to fallen sattelites and expensive vases.

Survival Horror

  • Resident Evil 4 has various treasures scattered around the place whose only purpose is to sell to the merchant for money, which can then be used to buy and upgrade weapons. Several treasures can be combines to form new items which are worth more than the sum of their parts.
    • Luckily, they take up no inventory room, and are listed separately from items that actually serve a purpose, so you know you won't later regret selling them. The merchant even helps you a little here. If he says, "I'll buy it at a high price!" when an item is highlighted, that means it has no purpose other than selling it to him. If he says anything else, the item can still be used for something.
  • In a rare non-RPG example, Dead Space has superconductors that exist solely for the sake of being sold for a hefty price.
    • Unused ammo that you get for your weapons counts as well. You can even get ammo for your weapons that you don't carry although you don't get much of said ammo to sell.

Tabletop Games

  • In Tabletop Roleplaying Games, anything you can convince the GM to give a value can become vendor trash. As a wise gamer once wrote: "if all else fails, steal the doors straight out of the dungeon".
    • To be fair, a high-level dungeon would probably have thick doors made of something like adamantine and are probably enchanted.
    • Hell, this was Lampshaded by no less than Gary Gygax himself in the 1st Edition Dungon Master's Guide. Gygax pointed out that things like flasks of oil, the weapons and armor belonging to human enemies, and pack animals could all be resold for decent prices, even if the enemies the players are looting didn't otherwise have a lot of cash on hand.

Turn Based Strategy

  • In the SNES/PSX game Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen several items have in their descriptions that their only use was to be sold off for money; the player could also find that different shopkeepers would offer varying amounts (or trade goods) for certain items.
  • Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem: In Book II you occasionally find Silver Axes, and never recruit anybody who can equip them. Averted in the DS remake where you do get several axe fighters, and the Silver Axes are replaced with what they were worth in the first place: gold.
    • Similarly, Radiant Dawn gave you a chance to find (and buy!) Dark magic tomes near the very end of the game, which at first seems silly without anyone in your party able to use them... keywords being "at first"; in a New Game+, you can recruit Pelleas (who specializes in Dark magic and Lehran, who can use them in the final battle, but comes with no tomes of his own, so you have give some to him in the middle of the fight, which is a waste of time.

Turn Based Tactics

  • Many alien items in UFO: Enemy Unknown (aka X-COM) and sequels have little or no use for the player, but can be sold for big bucks. Particularly noticeable with Mind Probes - of questionable utility on the battlefield, but worth more than even the heaviest guns when sold.
    • Alien corpses can also be sold for a pretty penny, which leads to the question of what these people are doing with all these dead aliens...
    • Its sequel, X-COM: Apocalypse, has several items which were originally supposed to have an in-game use, but was never implemented. One of these things is Psiclone, a narcotic implant often found by gangs and cults in the city (which can lead to X-COM raiding gangs, stealing their drugs, and selling off the take to fund their operations.)

Wide Open Sandbox

  • You can literally sell anything you find in the trash in Chulip... and this includes piles of Poopie.

Non Gaming Examples

  • This is the basis for TV shows like Auction Hunters and American Pickers. Both shows feature people who make their living buying things that would typically be dismissed as not worth very much and then reselling them for large sums of money to the right buyers. Sometimes even the literal trash itself can be valuable-at least one of the storage trailers purchased by the Auction Hunters was full of scrap metal that they were able to sell to the scrap dealer for a few hundred bucks, on top of all the other valuable contents.
  • In one of the 1632 - stories, a mercenary captain asks his XO why there are three packets of tampons in the strongbox, beside bags of various coins. The XO calmly explains that women are paying through the nose for the things, and there aren't any more being made, so they were a better investment than keeping the silver.
  • Cracked Photoplasty advertises a vendor that buys everything, specifically naming items that substitute for Money Spider in Ads for Products That Must Exist in Video Games.