10 of the most mind-blowing endings in video games

12.01.2023 0 By admin

[Falcon] Obviously, we play
video games for the journey,

but sometimes, the
ending’s pretty important.

The best kind of ending is the kind

that absolutely melts your brain.

Hi, folks, it’s Falcon,
and today on Gameranx,

10 of the most mind-blowing
endings in video games.

Just as a warning, before we get going,

this is a spoilerific video.

We are literally talking about
the twists of these games.

So if you hear a game

that you don’t want to know the twist to,

either skip it or shut it off

’cause that’s exactly what
we’re gonna talk about.

Starting off with number 10,

it’s the “Final Fantasy VII” remake.

For most of the story,

it remained a pretty faithful retelling

of the Midgar portion
of “Final Fantasy VII.”

Sure, they expanded a few
things, but otherwise,

it seemed like it was just
going through the same story

with a modern coat of paint.

However, there are some clues

that things aren’t exactly what they seem.

Sephiroth making an
appearance much earlier

than he does in the real
game is very interesting,

but that’s something you would expect

from a remake like this.

What’s harder to understand,
at least at first,

is the appearance of these
ghost creatures called Whispers.

Now, they do drop a lot of clues,

and all these little clues
and changes come together

in the conclusion, where
Cloud and friends battle

and eventually defeat the Whispers,

and it’s revealed that these
things are actually creatures

generated by the planet to
undo changes to the timeline.

It’s never explicitly stated,

but it’s heavily implied that
the ending with Sephiroth,

that one is the one
from the original game,

and therefore original timeline,

that somehow gained the
ability to travel through time

and he’s trying to find
a way to undo his defeat.

– Cloud, lend me your strength.

Let us defy destiny, together.

– [Falcon] That makes the
“Final Fantasy VII” remake

kind of like Sephiroth’s cosmic do-over,

and by destroying the Whispers,

you are inadvertently
playing into his hands,

which also means next “Final
Fantasy VII” remake game,

we know it’s a trilogy now,
the second in the trilogy

can go in whatever direction it wants.

Things are already changing too,

because it looks like Zack,

an important character
from the original game

who died before the original
story started, is still alive.

Or it could be a flashback
from an alternate timeline.

I don’t know.

But the ending of the
“Final Fantasy VII” remake

was mind-blowing because it
revealed the game was a remake

in more ways than one.

And at number nine is “SOMA,”

probably one of the best
horror games in recent memory.

“SOMA’s” a game with a
ton of these big ideas

about free will, consciousness,
the nature of the self,

and it’s incredibly bleak and creepy.

It all comes together so well

in the game’s shocking ending, too.

There’s almost too much
going on in the game

to fully explain what’s going on,

but the gist is that
you play as Sim Jarrett.

A guy who’s been brain-scanned in 2015

suddenly wakes up in an
underwater research facility

called PATHOS-II in the far future.

The whole place is in disrepair.

It’s patrolled by grotesque machines

that seem to think that they’re human.

– [Machine] Why?

I was okay.

I was happy.

– [Falcon] As you
progress through the game,

you learn that one of
the major breakthroughs

of the facility was that they could upload

a complete human brain scan to a computer

and allow humanity to
live on in that machine.

In a cataclysmic event that
destroyed all of human life

save the PATHOS 2 crew,

they resolved to try to
preserve their humanity

as best they can by
uploading their consciousness

to a probe and launching
it out into space.

That’s the main goal of the game:

uploading your consciousness to the probe,

which contains a fully realized simulation

and escape from this leaky
and ruined science facility.

At the end, you finally succeed.

You’ve launched the probe

after uploading your
consciousness at the last minute,

and you find that you’re
still stuck underwater.

It wasn’t you that was
uploaded. It’s just a copy.

– [Catherine] Simon, I can’t
keep telling you how it works.

You won’t listen.

You know why we’re here.

You are copied onto the ARK.
You just didn’t carry over.

You lost the coin toss. We both did.

Just like Simon at Omicron,

just like the man who died in
Toronto a hundred years ago.

– [Falcon] You’re trapped underwater,

and you’re not going to escape.

There’s a post-credits scene

that shows your offloaded
consciousness inside the computer

in a simulated environment.

It looks peaceful,

but the philosophical implications
are pretty mind-blowing.

Is the copy you, or
something else entirely?

And what is humanity anymore anyway

if you’re just brain scans in a probe

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in the depths of space,

which will only eventually fail anyhow?

I had actually thought about this

back in the day watching “Star Trek.”

When they beam someone somewhere,

they disassemble and reassemble
all of your molecules.

Wouldn’t that kill you?

Wouldn’t your consciousness end?

That they turn on another
reassembled version

of you somewhere else, besides
the fact that that brain

is loaded with your memories,

there’s no guarantee
that your consciousness

would actually travel along with you.

Perhaps it’s an entirely new consciousness

operating on all of the
same memories and variables.

I’m willing to bet that is something

that influenced the devs on “SOMA,”

and it’d be something I would
love to talk to them about.

There’s so much to talk
about in this game.

And at number eight is “Infamous” 1.

If you’re looking for something
a little less cerebral

but still very amusingly mind-blowing,

you gotta look no further than
the first “Infamous” game.

You play as Cole MacRath,

a dude in the wrong
place at the wrong time

who gains the power of electricity,

and from there, you
just get to do whatever.

You can be a hero, you can be a villain,

but either way, you face
off against Kessler,

the leader of a secret society

of superpowered individuals.

Like a lot of villains, this
guy’s constantly testing Cole

and forcing him to make
difficult decisions.

It’s a pretty common bad-guy trope,

and usually, the intentions
behind it are nebulous at best.

Not so much here.

At the very end of the game you find out

the totally crazy truth is that Kessler

is a future version of Cole
who has gone back to the past

to toughen himself up and get him ready

for a much more dangerous threat.

For most of the game, you
think Kesler was being evil

for evil’s sake, but he’s
actually trying to train you,

so that you’re capable of
taking on this new threat.

It’s a pretty wild
twist, just to introduce,

completely unmentioned, a new
villain at the end of the game

but it’s pretty much what Kessler does,

and it puts it all into a new light.

It’s not brilliant or anything,

it’s honestly kind of ridiculous,

but it’s mind-blowing
and it really, it’s fun.

And at number seven,
“Shadow of the Colossus.”

The entire game seems
like it’s building up

to some kind of tragedy, doesn’t it?

It’s this melancholy, sad game.

It kind of introduced to
the world the wanderlust

that would eventually
influence “Breath of the Wild”

and countless other games.

But wow, the first time
I played this game,

I did not expect it to go
quite as hard as they did.

The story is simple.

Your character, Wander,

wants to bring someone
they love back to life,

which kudos, I would too.

A mysterious voice in the shrine

that they bring that person to

tells you go and hunt Colossi,

and killing them in
some way will save her.

So you go and do what
the weird voice tells you

because it’s not like you
got any other options.

It’s a video game.

It doesn’t take long before
you’re kind of questioning

what killing these creatures
actually does, though.

Many of ’em aren’t even aggressive.

They only attack you to defend themselves.

And it really starts to
feel like you’re the bad guy

in this situation, and
the ending confirms it.

After killing the final Colossus,
you return to the shrine.

You’re rewarded by being
possessed by the voice

who is actually an evil
spirit called Dorian.

For a little while,

you control a Dormin-possessed Wander

who has become a giant black monster

who attacks the soldiers who
have come to contain you.

The spirit is eventually
sealed away by the priests,

and while the girl you’re trying
to save seems to be alive,

Wander has been transformed
into a baby with horns,

which reveals the game
is actually a prequel

to the game “Ico.”

It’s a weird and very surprising ending,

especially for when the
game actually came out.

And at number six is “Spec Ops: The Line.”

Set in a sandstorm-ravaged Dubai

ruled by a treasonous US Army battalion

that defied orders to leave the city,

you play as Captain Walker,

a soldier sent to make
contact with the Damned 33rd

and convince Colonel
John Konrad to come home,

but it all spirals out of control fast.

This is another one of those games

where you just know things
are gonna take a dark turn

at the end.

I mean, it takes multiple dark turns

at various points in the story,

but you really know the
ending’s not gonna be happy

the whole time.

The atmosphere is dense and oppressive.

Now, at the start,
Walker’s pretty generic,

but as the situation
gets worse in the city,

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he gets more vengeful and violent

and does nastier things to survive

and complete the mission.

For the entire game,

Konrad is taunting you and
comes off like a villain.

– [Konrad] I’m gonna kill
every last one of your men

and then I’m gonna kill you.

– [Falcon] But when you finally
manage to get to his tower,

you find it empty.

He killed himself

directly after failing
to evacuate the city.

So basically the whole game,
you’ve been hearing voices

in your head justifying what you’re doing.

You see flashes to scenes

where it seems like Konrad did something,

but it was actually Walker
who made the situation worse.

At the end, you’re left to decide

if Walker has any redemption
left, or he should just die.

It’s pretty dark.

It’s already, I mean, a pretty dark game,

but the ending gets…

It is dark.

I’m not sure it really succeed
in skewing military FPS games

like it sets out to do.

It’s kind of more of a
psychological horror game

than a military shooter, but
it’s got a mind-blowing ending.

And at number five is
“Xenoblade Chronicles.”

You’d think there would be
more JRPGs on this list,

but it’s pretty rare for these games

to save the twist for the ending.

Most of the time you get
the big twist around halfway

or two-thirds of the way through the story

rather than at the very end.

And “Xenoblade Chronicles”
is already packed

with crazy twists, honestly.

It’s a game where the world
you live in is on a giant titan

that died after battling
another giant titan.

So it’s already starting somewhere weird,

and it only gets more nutty from there.

By the end of the game,
you’re battling the god Zanza

for control of the
universe, because why not?

By JRPG standards, this is fairly normal.

But after you defeat him,

that’s when the big twist is revealed.

The world of Xenoblade
is actually our world.

The game reveals in a flashback

that scientists on a space station

managed to create some kind
of world-altering device,

which, when activated,
transformed the Earth we knew

into the bizarre world of Xenoblade.

This was never hinted at anywhere else.

It’s basically just a crazy twist

for the sake of a crazy twist,

and it’s rare for these types of things

to happen later in the game.

But the series actually
expanded on the twist

and added a little more context,
not a ton, but a little.

Something, at least.

And at number four is “Inside,”

a game that starts you off knowing nothing

and somehow ends with you knowing less.

At the start, all you know is
that you’re a boy, seemingly,

and you’re going somewhere.

Along the way, pretty much
everything wants you dead,

but for whatever reason,

your character keeps
moving forward anyways.

I mean, yeah, you could
just say it’s a video game,

so of course, you’re
trying to make progress,

but in terms of the story,

whatever this kid’s goal is
has gotta be important, right?

As you get deeper and deeper
into the science facility

where most of the game takes place,

you’re probably expecting
an answer, right?

Like, I don’t know.

Is he going in to rescue
his family or something?

So when you open up this
giant containment unit

and I guess combine with
a giant blob of flesh,

it’s kind of shocking.

From there, you go on a
rampage of destruction

before completely escaping the facility.

You roll down a hill, you
stop, and the game ends.

Are you dead?

What the hell was that?

There’s no real answer.

The ending of “Inside” is impressive

because it proves that even
a game with very little story

can have a mind-blowing narrative ending

as long as it’s sufficiently insane.

At number three is “BioShock Infinite.”

The story of “BioShock
Infinite” sure does go places,

doesn’t it?

What starts off is a pretty
simple rescue mission

becomes so much more
complicated by the end.

The basic premise is you
play as Booker Dewitt,

a private eye who’s been given the task

of rescuing a girl named Elizabeth

from the floating city of Columbia,

a turn-of-the-century
religious “paradise,”

heavy scare quotes, ruled by
the tyrannical Father Comstock.

After rescuing Elizabeth,

it becomes clear there’s
way more going on, though.

This isn’t just a
fantastical city gone wrong

like the first BioShock.

It is an alternate universe.

The big twist comes to the
end after you kill Comstock.

You go through a portal

and arrive at the beginning
of the first BioShock game,

and Elizabeth reveals there
are countless lighthouses

and countless universes.

That’d be enough to earn
this gam a spot on this list,

but we’re just getting started.

From there, you learn that Comstock

is an alternate universe Booker Dewitt

and that Elizabeth is
actually Booker’s child

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who he sold off to Comstock

before the story of the
game really kicked off.

A lot of what Booker does

is sort of drowning out that memory

and he’s forced to confront it

during the course of the ending,

which lands with a bizarre scene

of alternate universe Elizabeth’s

drowning him/baptizing him

as a way to stop the entire construction

of Columbia and everything
that would follow,

because that’s eventually what

Booker DeWitt apparently does.

It doesn’t really make perfect sense,

but you can’t deny that
the ending’s pretty crazy.

And at number two, “Silent Hill 2.”

For a lot of people out there,
the ending to “Silent Hill 2”

is the mind-blowing ending in video games.

In 2001, horror games
just did not have endings

like this one.

It was psychological and complex,

but grounded in reality
in a way few games are.

Almost everyone knows the twist

of “Silent Hill 2” at this point,

but if you don’t, here’s
a quick refresher.

You play his James who
gets a mysterious letter

from his dead wife
telling him to come back

to the town they vacationed
at once, Silent Hill.

The entire game sees James
wander around the town

in an almost dreamlike stupor,
experiencing strange visions,

dealing with grotesque
enemies, and it becomes clear

that whatever happened
to James’s wife Mary,

he doesn’t give the full story on it.

When you reach the hotel
room where they stayed,

the truth is revealed.

Mary didn’t die from her unnamed illness.

She was actually killed by James.

He smothered her with a pillow.

On the surface, this seems like a

you-were-the-bad-guy-the-whole-time-type
plot,

but the actual story’s much more complex.

What James did was really
more like an assisted suicide.

Mary said she wanted to
die and James helped her,

but his lingering guilt
surrounding the whole situation

still haunts him.

It’s an unusually complex
and mature situation

for a video game story,
and it’s up to the player

to interpret what the
game’s actually saying.

It’s an all time great twist

and adds a lot of depth to the story

that people still pick over to this day.

And finally, at number one,

if you rate how mind-blowing something is

by the amount of times you
should say WTF during it,

then “Metal Gear Solid 2” gets top marks.

“Metal Gear Solid 2”
is already a little off

compared to the more grounded first game,

which is saying a lot,

’cause the first game had psychic soldiers

and a giant shaman with a
minigun, but to be fair,

“Metal Gear Solid 2” stays
at least understandable

for a lot of the Big Shell section.

But the second you get on
Arsenal Gear, all bets are off.

Raiden is naked for some reason,

and the bad guys are
reenacting the torture sequence

from the first game.

You escape,

and now Colonel Campbell is
spouting total nonsense at you

over the codex,

and everything looks
like you’re in a fake,

weird video game environment.

The entire climax of the game
only kind of makes sense,

and it’s about free will,
information control,

and a meta-narrative of the entire nature

of video game sequels.

To make a long story short,

Raiden battles the former
president of the United States

who is also a Big Boss clone

on top of Liberty Hall in New York City

because an AI told him he
has to fight a last boss

to finish the game.

The whole thing is WTF incarnate.

“Metal Gear Solid 2” is a
weird game to put it mildly,

and like “Silent Hill 2,”

it’s got one of the most important

mind-blowing endings of all time.

“MGS 2” went on to be hugely influential,

and even just on the specific
idea of meta narrative

in gaming, but also you could say

that it called a lot of
stuff over the last 10 years

of actual, real-world information control.

There is nothing quite as
jarringly weird as the climax

of “Metal Gear Solid 2,”

making it the perfect one
to wrap this list up with.

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I’m Falcon. You can follow
me on Twitter @FalconTheHero.

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