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A disposable lieutenant is a prominent figure in the ranks of the protagonist's adversaries that, despite what trouble they may cause the player character, are ultimately deemed unnecessary by their own leaders and done away with. The character may play a prominent role in the story and even be encountered as a boss fight on at least one occasion, but it is ultimately his or her own superiors that cause them to meet their doom.
Examples in Video Games
Final Fantasy XIII
In Final Fantasy XIII, the PSICOM officer Jihl Nabaat is a high ranking member of the Sanctum military of Cocoon that serves directly under the Primarch Galenth Dysley. She plays a major role in the early portions of the game's story, and manages to use Sazh Katzroy's son Dajh as bait in order to capture both Sazh and Vanille. Nabaat's ultimate scheme is to lure the other l'Cie on board the Sanctum airship Palamecia by using their allies as bait in turn, and capture them all at once.
Nabaat's plans, however, quickly sour. The l'Cie manage to regroup and cause havoc throughout the ship before making it all the way to the bridge. Nabaat, stunned by this turn of events, intends to right her mistake, but Dysley executes her on the spot before revealing his true nature.
The World Ends With You
In The World Ends With You, Sho Minamimoto is a prominent, highly eccentric reaper that runs the Reapers' Game during the second week of the storyline. He's highly effective at this task, but is unable to stop Neku and his partner Joshua, Shibuya's composer. In the game's final stages, Sho is found having been crushed to death by his superiors, who saw that his desires to become Shibuya's composer was making him too difficult to keep under control.