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In We Happy Few, the player's journal contains a statistics page. One of the stats is called "Total non-lethal kills".

Putting aside the blatantly self-contradictory nature of that label, what is considered a "non-lethal kill" by the game? Is it just any action taken by the player that renders an NPC unconscious rather than dead? (Directly causing a death counts as "murder"; indirectly causing a death does not count toward any stat.)

Initially, I assumed the word "kill" was simply an artifact of the fact that in some games — including Dishonored, and BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea - Episode 2 — a non-lethal elimination is functionally equivalent to a kill, with the only differences being that a weapon or move designated as "non-lethal" is used and the NPC's state is "unconscious", not "dead". For example, in BaS - Episode 2, unconscious NPCs never wake up and their bodies can even despawn, just like dead NPCs. This is also the case with every Dishonored game.

But, while playing We Happy Few, I just came across this in-game tip:

Unconscious people eventually wake up and walk away when you're not looking.

... so I guess that theory is out the window, basically, since you could technically "non-lethally kill" someone twice. Does that also mean they die, non-lethally, twice? (This may sound like an absurd question but answering it in terms of "killing" someone twice would certainly help with answering the primary question.)

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2 Answers 2

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They're now labelled as "takedowns", so that's one problem solved.

As you suspect, a takedown is when you either use the "takedown" action, or "kill" someone using non-lethal damage. That is, via stun or any weapon that states it does non-lethal damage in its description.

Non-lethal weapon list:

  • Unarmed
  • Sleeptite Atomizer
  • Electric Truncheon
  • "The Help"
  • "Jack the Nipper"
  • Jolly Brolly preorder
  • The "Nighty Night"
  • The "Sledger"

While the Electric Truncheon claims to do very light lethal damage, it's far more likely to stun someone unconscious before it kills. I don't know whether this is a discrepancy in its description (i.e. it actually does heavy non-lethal damage), nor whether it's possible to get a takedown with the heavier stun weapons before they kill.

Unconscious people eventually wake up and walk away when you're not looking.

This is simply flavour text for the fact that bodies despawn and NPC names are reused. There is no equivalent explanation as to how you can meet people you definitely killed before. Killing or performing a takedown again on the "same" NPC still increases the counter.

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  • Thanks for the answer. I should get back to this game!
    – BoltClock
    Commented Jun 4, 2020 at 11:59
  • @BoltClock I just did a full playthrough (66h) of the story mode and DLCs. While there are many faults to be found, overall I had a great time.
    – OrangeDog
    Commented Jun 4, 2020 at 12:12
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According to Reddit's article about non-lethal weapons, it seems like it would be a "kill" that is performed using a non-lethal weapon, the aforementioned thread contains a few discussions of weapons of that sort.

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