As I am talking about video game endings there are of course major spoilers ahead so please be warned. Video games are more story driven than ever and there have been some games that have left as deep an impact with me as some movies and books have.
Here are 7 video game endings that left a huge impact on me when I finished them.
The Last Of Us
Wow, what a game! I loved The Last Of Us and I have played through both versions multiple times. It is not just the ending of The Last Of Us that blew me away. I could not have been any more invested in the story of Joel and Ellie. The way those two were written and the voice acting was as good as something you would see in a Hollywood movie.
The ending of The Last Of Us sees Joel and Ellie in a research facility. Ellie who is immune to the plague destroying mankind may hold the key to a vaccine. Unfortunately, she has to die in order for this to happen. Ellie is willing to do this, but Joel has grown to love her as a daughter and stops it from happening, taking Ellie away and lying to her about it. It was so impactful and brutal that I was left in awe the first time I experienced it. I also actually really related to Joel (as a father myself) and have to say I would have done the same thing.
Bioshock Infinite is the third game in the Bioshock series and it is actually set before the events of the first two games. You play as a guy called Booker DeWitt a man who has been tasked with bringing back a mysterious girl from the floating city of Columbia. If he does this the huge debts that he has rung up will be wiped away.
The girl in question is Elizabeth and you really grow to like her so much that you are willing to do anything to protect her and you do not care about the money anymore. The ending of Bioshock Infinite really screwed with me and left my jaw on the floor. Turns out that you are Elizabeth’s father and that you are actually the villain of the game from a different timeline. Elizabeth realizes this before you do and it is pretty heartbreaking and mind-blowing.
Street Fighter II Turbo
Ok so a very weird on here, but please hear me out. I played a ton of Street Fighter II. But it was Street Fighter II on the SNES that I spent the most time with as a kid. I had completed this game so many times with each character that it was not even funny. As I got better at the game I decided that I needed to beat the game on the hardest difficulty.
Which the first time I did and as well as the standard ending that I got with Ken (and had seen a million times) I got a really cool music video showing the characters and then a really cool piece of Street Fighter art. I had no idea this was in the game, I was only playing on the hardest difficulty for the challenge and getting this bonus ending out of nowhere blew me away.
Gears Of War 3
I am a huge fan of the Gears Of War series and to me, this along with Halo are the two main Xbox exclusives. That first Gears Of War game was the first Xbox 360 game that made me feel the next generation was here. The whole series is very story driven and the third game in the series wrapped everything up, well for the time.
Before we get to the ending I have to talk about when Dom died. This was one of the most heartbreaking things in a game for me and as soon as it happened. I went on the internet to see if there was anything you could do to save him. The ending though is very “weird” you have been through hell in the three Gears Of War games and seeing Marcus Fenix take a moment just to sit down and relax was one of those moments where you felt that if there is a character who deserves peace it is him.
I am talking about the reboot of Splatterhouse here so I know that there will be some raised eyebrows. However, I freaking love what Namco did with the reboot of Splatterhouse. It hot horrible and unfair reviews, but it is actually one of my favorite games of that console generation. For a game that is all about gore, hacking off limbs and profanity. Splatterhouse has a very engaging story that is well written and very well acted.
The game sees you playing as Rick with the Terror Mask who must rescue his girlfriend Jennifer from being the vessel for a deranged doctor's dead wife! You go through hell (literally) to do this and just when you think you have saved the love of your life you are left in doubt as the game ends…… worst of all we never got a sequel to clarify what happened.
Final Fantasy VII
This is more of a nostalgia based one. Back in 1997, I would have been 16 years old and this was my first big RPG experience. I spent close to 100 hours with Cloud, Tiffa, Barret, Aeris and the rest. The story had me hooked and I could not have been any more invested and after Aeris died, I was so sure there would be something I could do to bring her back.
Well, that may not have been the case, but seeing Sephiroth going from hero mentor to villain was incredible. I was so ready to kill this guy that by the time that final battle came around I was so hyped up. That final battle in Final Fantasy VII took what felt like forever. I was dripping with sweat and when the world had been saved, thanks to the ending cutscene I had this real sense of peace.
All six of the Uncharted games are incredible. Each one, even the two side games have impressed me. I loved the story of Nathan Drake. I have talked about Uncharted before, but I really do not think there are many game series that have wrapped everything up as well as the Uncharted series did with Uncharted 4.
I was so worried that they were going to kill of Nathan Drake, Elena or Sully that it made that final game a very nervous experience for me. Thankfully the folks at Naughty Dog did not go that way. In a day an age where the surprise shock ending is all the rage or it having to be dark is what is seen as popular. Seeing Nathan Drake and the rest of the cast getting to ride off into the sunset and live a normal happy life was fantastic and well deserved.
What video game endings have blown you away and left you with a long lasting memory? I would love to hear about it in the comments section.