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Angry Video Game Nerd

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What were they thinking?!
~ The AVGN's catchphrase, referring to poor choices made by game developers.
What's the difference?...All these games suck. All these games suck too! I'm surrounded by filth! Might as well cover my walls in shit! I'm living in shit! Fuckin' video games...wasted so many hours of human life on this vile crap. We've failed in our existence, we were cursed with the technology, to invent such horrible mind-rotting catastrophes! We're better in fuckin' medieval times...we were better sitting on a riverbank playing with fuckin' rocks! This game sucks! And this game sucks! And this game sucks! And this game sucks!...Fuckin' thing barely even works, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing, and this fuckin' thing... I don't like 'em.
~ The Nerd at the beginning of his R.O.B. review

The Angry Video Game Nerd (originally the Angry Nintendo Nerd, and often shorted to the "Nerd" or the "AVGN", played by James Rolfe) is the main character of the long-running video series of the same name in which he foul-mouthedly reviews "shitty" video games (usually on the NES, SNES, and a few terrible video games consoles). He has acted as a villain in several episodes. 

In his tests, the Nerd usually gets involved in other insane hijinks related to the game's subject matter, such as encountering characters like Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger and Bugs Bunny, which usually end violently, not only including but shockingly most of all with Bugs Bunny.

Although the "hero" of his show, the Nerd is unquestionably an anti-social, cruel and sometimes even psychotic individual - at least in the context of his own universe. This is especially prominent in his behavior towards enemies or people who displease him, as he is prone to humiliate them in extremely vulgar ways (such as literally defecating on their faces).  He even almost tricked Pat the NES Punk into handing one of his most rare NES games.

He does have a noble side to him.  In his Spielberg Games video, he says he plays shitty games so innocent gamers don't have to, and in his AVGN Games episode, he is quite respectful for the games that people made single-handedly and acknowledges they are done better than many made by whole companies of Laughing Joking Numbnuts.

He uses several weapons to destroy atrocious games and he sometimes uses other abilities like inputting ABBA which is a cheat code to raise the dead.

Notable Acts Of Villainy Committed By The Nerd

It's not chocolate, nor is it poop. It's s--t!
~ The Nerd after taking a dump in a kids' Halloween bag.
  • In the episode where he reviews Halloween for the Atari 2600, two kids came to his house. Instead of putting candy in the bag, the Nerd took a dump in their bags and swore in front of them.
  • In several episodes, the Angry Video Game Nerd would have an anal evacuation on scene. He even took a dump on several characters.
  • When the Nostalgia Critic demanded that the Nerd keep his fans under control, following a series of what the Critic considers "unfair comparisons"; the Nerd responded with a message on his forum, declaring that "I have seen some of his videos. His Cloverfield review was hilarious, and if I'm not mistaken, I think he did the "5 second movies" also. Those put me to tears. So yes, call me a fan of his". Unwilling to believe the Nerd, the Critic attempted to decipher the message to uncover a hidden meaning (a la The Da Vinci Code). When finished, the message appeard to nothing but complete gibberish; but upon being viewed in the mirror, the true meaning was revealed: LICK MY SHIT NOSTALGIA CRITIC. The Critic later attacked the Nerd for reviewing the Wizard before him The Nerd later responded, expressing gratitude to the Critic for deciphering the message, but revealed that it was actually: LICK MY BALLS YOU PIECE OF SHIT NOSTALGIA CRITIC. The Critic challenged the Nerd to review a horrible nostalgic movie, to which the Nerd agreed on the condition that the Critic suffer at a bad game, followed by a three way brawl between them and Captain S. The Nerd then reviewed Ricky 1, while the Critic reviewed the video game adaptaion of Bebe's Kids. The feud culminated with one final battle in the Nerd's room, with the Nerd emerging victorious with the help of Super Mecha Death Christ; however, the Critic's bloody rose up after the battle, hinting that the feud was not over. The feud ended in the TGWTG Team Brawl, where the Critic and the Nerd finally put their differences aside. The two then reviewed the TMNT Coming Out Of Our Shells Tour, but at the end they started fighting each other out of boredom. To this day, the Critic and the Nerd both display extreme dislike for one another.
  • In the crossover with Captain S, A Very Nerdy Non-Canonical Captain S Christmas, though the Nerd helped Captain S save Santa, he ended up saying Merry censored Christmas. While not villainous, due the family friendly nature of Captain S, it was treated as such so Santa punished the Nerd by giving him Home Alone 2: Lost in New York on the NES.
  • AVGN (HtNSC)

    Angry Video Game Nerd in How the Nerd Stole Christmas

    In a Christmas special; How the Nerd Stole Christmas, The Nerd tried to steal Christmas, by stealing all the great games, replace them with bad ones, and attempted to dump the good video games. In this special, the Nerd acted like the Grinch, living in a cave on top of a moutain, proclaiming he hated Christmas, and having a similar devil-ish smile.
    AVGN as Santa (HtNSC)

    Angry Video Game Nerd disguised as Santa Clause in How the Nerd Stole Christmas

    He also impersonated as Santa Claus to fool the kids.
  • In his Nintendo World Championship video, the Nerd buys a box full of old video games, one of which contains a copy of the Nintendo World Championship video game. Expecting an actual copy of the game, or even the rare golden edition, he is dismayed to discover a reproduction cartridge. After discovering that Pat the NES Punk has an actual copy, then he attempts to steal it by claiming it to be fake and giving Pat the box of games in exchange. Pat accepts, and discovers that the box contains an authentic golden cartridge of the game, and upon seeing this, the nerd attempts to get both cartidges to complete his NES collection.  Eventually, the two game reviewers decide to play the game itself to determine who gets the cartridges; but when the Nerd sees that it essentially consists of short demos of a few existing games, rather than being an actual video game, he gets angry and destroys both Nintendo World Championships cartridges like he would any poor game. As a result, Pat descends into insanity and begins to throttle the Nerd. The ending credits sequence for the episode shows James and Pat holding the rare cartridges used to show that they were not actually destroyed. Rolfe has also said that both cartridges belong to Pat.
  • In his 2 part crossover with Pat the NES Punk where he reviewed The Adventures of Bayou Billy and Pat reviewed The Punisher, The Nerd revealed the Nintendo World Championship games presumably destroyed at the end of the Nintendo World Championship video and revealed he secretly stole both. Pat admitted that during the time he thought both were destroyed he was in therapy to cope with the experience.
  • In the episode where he reviews Star Trek games, when a Metron tells The Nerd that he just demonstrated mercy, he replies "Mercy this, motherfucker!", then shoots the Metron to death with his blaster.


  • In many videos, the Nerd mentions his hatred for the game, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  In real life, the game is James' least favorite game. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde ranked number 1 in the Top 10 Worst NES Games. In his review of Darkwing Duck on the Turbo-Grafx 16, he made a shit-o-meter, to rate games based on how sucky they were. Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde had its own place on the meter rather than be a part of a meter.
  • During the Dracula games review, the Nerd was playing the SNES or Genesis adaption of the 1992 Coppola Dracula film and name during the credits called Fred Fuchs.  The name would be used as a joke in future videos. Fred Fuchs was the final boss of AVGN Adventures.
    • Fred Fuchs was actually one of the producers for the Coppola film and had nothing to do with the game.
  • The Nerd holds an intense hatred for LJN, usually referring to the logo as "the unholy rainbow stamp of death" and says that LJN stands for "Laughing Joking Numbnuts." In the second part of the AVGN Wish List video, he finally played Maximum Carnage and was surprised to find that LJN made a decent game.
    • In reality, most of the games were only published by LJN and were made by other video game developers. However, the hatred remains justified as LJN allowed the games to be released.
    • The Angry Video Game Nerd finally acknowledged LJN as a game publisher in his review of the NES version of Beetlejuice but still stated that the game was made by LJN as they were meant to ensure that the developers made a good product. Given that Beetlejuice was developed by Rare, the developers of Donkey Kong Country and Killer Instinct (but also made Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Nightmare on Elm Street for LJN) , the Nerd uses this as evidence that LJN were most likely forcing developers to churn out hastily developed cash-in games.
  • The Nerd was terrified of the E.T. the Extraterrestrial game for the Atari 2600 and often mentioned that he refuses to review it.  However the game was the focus for Angry Video Game Nerd: The Movie. Despite E.T. being the focus of the movie, fans still asked him to review the game while the movie was in production. He finally reviewed the game at the end of the movie and actually admitted to have played worse and even claimed the gameplay was addicting, though he still claimed it was a bad game.
  • The full version of his theme song can be heard in his Sega CD review, where he is called the Angry Atari, Amiga, CD-i, Colecovision, Intellivision, Sega, Neo-Geo, TurnboGrafx-16, Odyssey, 3DO, Commodore, Nintendo Nerd.
  • The Nerd hates Tiger Electronic games even more than LJN games, considering them all to be extremely primitive.
  • He initially considered Tiger's R-Zone to be the worst video game console of all time, but the title was later given to the LJN Video Art, which was the final gift he reviewed in the Twelve Days of Shitsmas.
  • A large number of video games in James Rolfe's collection were given to him by fans.
  • Several people actually believe the Angry Video Game Nerd's persona is James Rolfe's real personality. a fact that James Rolfe acknowledged.  In reality, James is a very nice guy.
  • James Rolfe owns nearly 800 NES titles, almost the entire collection.
  • Despite making frequent references to Castlevania 2: Simon's Quest, which was his first game review, James has admitted to liking the game, despite its flaws and his first game review was meant to be a joke. In his revisit of the game in the second video of the Nerd's four video review of the Castlevania franchise, he acknowledges more positive qualities of the game, such the nostalgic feel, the graphics, the music, and the Castlevania atmosphere.
  • The Nerd is usually more forgiving of terrible games on the Atari 2600, due to the system's limited capabilities.
  • In the second Atari Jaguar video, the Nerd states that he bought two CD add-ons for the Atari Jaguar and neither worked. He sent one to Richard of who was unable to fix its connection problems even when he directly wired the add-on and main console together, leaving him and the Nerd to conclude that the Atari Jaguar CDs were self aware and refused to be played. In consolation, Richard gave the Nerd a still working Pong console, and the Nerd proceeded to defacate on the Jaguar (referencing that the add-on made the console look like a toilet). Sometime after the video was uploaded, someone sent James one that worked, which he and Mike Matei both used in an episode of James and Mike Mondays.
  • The Nerd is a grammar Nazi. Some texts were so poorly written that he was either enraged or even brought to tears.
  • In the crossover with Captain S, the Nerd's swearing was vastly toned down and his only swears were interrupted and censored.
    • Amazingly despite A Very Nerdy Non-Canonical Captain S Christmas being non-canon with Captain S, it was canon with Angry Video Game Nerd because it set up Angry Video Game Nerd Christmas Carol.
  • The Nerd almost retired after playing Desert Bus after believing he failed to warn the world about shitty games. After playing a hacked version of Castlevania 2: Simon's Quest that addressed all the problems the original game had, the Nerd decides not to retire and hopes to do something bigger.
  • it is highly suggested in the Board James series that the Nerd is actually a malignant alter ego of Board James resulting from a psychotic breakdown that turned Board James from a semi-functional (if nerdy) individual into the borderline psychopath the Nerd is (he is especially antagonistic near the finale where he taunts Board James and effectively takes control, akin to schizrophenia or similar psychosis).

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