If you've been playing video games as long as I have—or even longer—you've undoubtedly come across a fair share of deaths. They range from sudden, unexpected deaths to the more traumatizing ones where you actually watch the character you've been playing get chainsawed, curb-stomped, or ripped apart in any number of brutal ways. Here are ten deaths that we'll never forget.
Let's start off gently; what's lighter than Pac-Man? I mean, you play as a yellow partially eaten pie with a wee beady eye and an insatiable hunger for pellets and various fruits. But this game is unintentionally terrifying. First off, you're stuck in a labyrinthine room that has a very carefully laid path of food, as if some unseen third party has set this whole thing up and is watching you from afar with a sick sense of satisfaction. Then, to make things worse, four deceptively cute ghosts are chasing you, their colorful exteriors housing within them dark and twisted spirits that have the remarkable ability to make you implode when you touch them. All Pac-Man ever wanted was a little white pellet, maybe two, or perhaps a dozen, but these ghosts turned the tables by making him eat himself when he got too close to them.
I can't say I've ever sat down and wondered what it'd be like to die a slow and excruciating death caused in equal parts by a helicopter crash and radiation sickness. Then Modern Warfare came along and sowed the seed of terror for anything and everything that had even the slightest chance of giving me radiation poisoning. I'd go to my microwave to nuke a frozen dinner, only to see that black box of death and radiation sitting there, as if it were silently taunting me to come closer and be doused in its hot, radioactive poison. I've lived off sandwiches and Ramen noodles ever since.
Mortal Kombat is known for bestowing upon you the ability to slay your incapacitated foe in the most brutal of ways. Some of these are sickening, others are a little over-the-top, but they're all awful ways to die. From Sektor's Trash Compactor Fatality to the slew of Babalities that turn your character into a sobbing infant, Mortal Kombat has proven adept at punishing its players in some incredibly clever ways.
I could title this death "Your Friends Don't Care about the Fact that You're Too Feeble to Pull Yourself Up from a Ledge Because They're Probably Already in the Safe Room," but I was told that might be a little too long. If no one comes to save you, this death can be particularly arduous, and the constant screams for help by your character as they slowly lose their grip only worsens your agony. On top of that, this death hits closer to home because in a zombie apocalypse, I would totally be that guy. I would be the one who didn't have the upper body strength required to heave my Cheeto and Mountain Dew-ladened butt up the ledge, forcing me to struggle toward a slow and embarrassing demise.
I was never very skilled at Sonic the Hedgehog, but I do fancy myself an above average gamer. My confidence in myself quickly dissipated when I watched as Sonic drowned for the first time. I didn't know how I could've failed so horribly, leaving that little blue guy lost to the deep blue. It didn't help that the bubbles that refill Sonic's oxygen supplies are roughly twice the size of him either.
Honorable Mention goes out to Assassin's Creed, where I was equally as surprised to watch my character fall prey to a watery death. This one didn't make much sense, because Altaïr is a deadly assassin, one who can slay countless guards at once and land safely after a hundred foot drop into a bale of hay. Then you make one move while traversing a body of water and you find out that Altaïr can't swim.