An earlier version of this article appeared on this website in February, 2014.
Are your legs tired? 'Cause you've been running th- hey, where are you going?
There are few things worse than a cliched pick-up line. Rather than simply walking up to someone and, y'know, just trying to get to know them, throwing out a classic like "If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?" will usually end with some type of beverage being thrown in your face. But what about video game characters? They get away with stupid stuff all the time.
The following gallery contains the gaming universe's most um, memorable pick-up lines. Be warned, they will make you cringe... or worse. Hopefully laugh too. Either way, if you try to use any of these on your next night out on the town, expect to hear "Fox, get this guy off me!" more than a few times.
"Maybe I'll let you do a strip search on me" (Metal Gear Solid)
YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO BE A DOCTOR! Surely this goes against everything in your doctor/patient code book? Sure, you'll argue that it's keeping up his morale (I said 'morale') while he's on a dangerous mission and giving him something to hold on to (stop it) for the duration, but still. He's going to hold you to that, Naomi.
We know this because Snake replies "I'll hold you to that, doctor". So what's it going to be like when he gets back from Shadow Moses, snaps on a pair of surgical gloves and looks at you expectantly? Awkward. That's what.
"We came to hit on you." (Persona 3)
Fighting demons is hard work, and our intrepid crew deserves a little vacay on the sandy shores of Yakushima. Also, there are girls at beaches. It doesn't take world-class goofus Junpei long to connect the dots and throw together a plan to get him and his friends hooked up with, well, anyone with a pulse at this point. There's no way 'Operation Babe Hunt' would end in disaster, right?
It... goes about as well as you'd expect; which is to say, awkward and facepalm inducing. After stumbling through hackneyed pick-up lines and failing miserably with every attempt, our 'heroes' end up exactly where they started: single, and just a little bit depressed. Let's just go back to class and pretend this whole vacation never happened, shall we?
"Now look at you! A fine woman you've become. Fine and plump and, ho ho, pleasantly jiggly. Ho ho ho! ...Ahem." (Bravely Default)
Nothing kills quest momentum faster than having to talk to a dirty old man with a penchant for lechery, and Sage Yulyana is the king of dirty old men. He's nothing if not direct, which would be far more admirable than relying on terrible puns - if he didn't sail right past endearing and head straight into 'please-stop-breathing-so-close-to-me-before-I-slap-you-with-a-restraining-order' territory.
What takes all this to even creepier levels is when you realize that all of the female characters were originally teenagers in the Japanese version of Bravely Default. It wasn't until the Western translations that their ages changed to be a bit less jailbaity. So yeah, not only is Yulyana an obnoxiously persistent perv, he probably deserves a visit (or five) from Chris Hansen.
"I already checked you out, commander." (StarCraft: Brood War)
Being commander of a massive space army is sexy - I mean stressful - work. With all the pointing and clicking you have to do, it's nice to know that Blizzard was 'thoughtful' enough to put a sultry medic in StarCraft: Brood War. Because the space-based strategy game needed sexy nurses, apparently.
Click on her once, and she seductively asks "Where does it hurt?" Continue to click on her, and she'll ask you if you're ready for your sponge bath. Don't push your luck with this temptress, though, or she'll mock your insatiability, asking if you want yet another physical. Hey, you came on to me first.
"Look into my eyes... You're-going-to-like-me... You're-going-to-like-me... Did it work?" (Final Fantasy 8)
Between being disinterested in pretty much everyone who's willing to give him the time of day and everything that doesn't involve smacking something upside the head with a gunblade, Squall is basically the worst. And of course, Rinoa falls head over heels for him. Every advance, every attempt to get closer to him is met with that all-too-familiar ellipses. Then she pulls out this gem, and the only thing that would have made it cornier is if she'd had a pocket watch swinging in front of his aloof and uncaring eyeballs.
I will never understand what Rinoa saw in Captain Milquetoast, but hey, you can't blame her for trying. And her persistence pays off, as the two finally fall in love by the end of the game. Yay?
"I would gladly cut my belly for you." (Way of the Samurai 4)
I, uh hrm. OK. So, Way of the Samurai 4 doesn't really revel in anything that us humans would call 'normal'. I mean, it's got characters unironically called Melinda Megamelons and Jet Jenkins for chrissakes. So of course there's a mini-game where you go trolling for as much feudal Japanese strange as you possibly can.
It starts innocently enough, as you discuss the weather and how beautiful the moon looks and then it gets weird. In fact, considering you can come right out and tell your date what a 'nice, firm ass' she has, or that you request that she 'open [her] borders alllll of them' (sigh, I wish I was making this up), a statement that you'd literally commit seppuku to be with a girl seems downright romantic in comparison. If it, y'know, made any sense at all.
"I see a strong, passionate man. With a great ass." (Mass Effect 3)
Ashley and Shepherd in Mass Effect can plump up their romance stats to a sufficient level to trigger gems like this. Shepherd asks Ashley "Is my rank all you see when you look at me?" To which she replies with "No, I see a strong, passionate man. With a great ass." Must be the Ass Effect.
Never mind the emotional depth (cough) of Shepherd, basically the way to get his attentions is to just brand him a lump of meat, right to his face. Don't worry, he loves it. Other amazing Mass Effect lines of chat-up gold include "shut up and kiss me" and...
"Oh, an actual shower! The faucets in the women's bathroom are crap, by the way..." (Mass Effect 3)
Nudge nudge, wink wink, say no more! This is from the Femshep shower scene in Mass Effect 3 (with FemShep and Samantha Traynor), which contains the equally brilliant but much more blunt suggestion: "In any event, I thought you might be in the mood to 'play'..." not so much a chat-up line as just asking 'I thought you might want to have sexy sex in that shower you're so impressed with'. And how do you even start to analyse that in terms of how it would help your pursuit of 100% paragon?
Still, something's gone wrong somewhere because everyone keeps at least some of their clothes on. Not quite sure they've got the hang of this...
"You're so cute I could eat you" (Yakuza)
Unfortunately, it seems that the object of Mr Yakuza's affections (he's 'Kazuma' to his friends, but Mr Yakuza to me) was only coming on so strong to make him down a spiked drink so his money could easily be stolen. Good thing really, she comes across as so desperate, nobody this side of the character described in the Offspring's Self Esteem would stick around long enough to get this far.
But at this juncture in the conversation, you really do have the option to use this sorry excuse for a chat-up line. I can only hope he too was only saying it because he wanted to steal her money... wait, what am I saying? This is all kinds of wrong whichever angle you look at it from.