Boss fights are a longstanding staple of video games. Some games, like Metal Gear Solid, deliver incredibly memorable boss fights, while others, like No More Heroes, take the concept as far over the top as they can possibly get away with. However, there are a few boss battles that truly put players against insurmountable odds that, by all logic, should not even be possible. I present to you the six most epic boss fights in gaming.
Now, this is not a list of the best boss fights, or the most innovative boss fights. This is a list of instances where the odds are stacked so high against the player that they may as well just give up hope completely. You know how in Star Wars, a space station the size of a small moon with the power to destroy entire planets is ultimately brought down by a farm boy in a tiny X-Wing who must shoot a weak point no bigger than a womp rat? These boss fights are sort of like that.
The Resistance series tells the story of a war between mankind and an alien menace called the Chimera. However, unlike most of the stories that come out of this traditional sci-fi mold, the humans in the Resistance games are constantly losing. This is mainly due to the absurd number of Chimera they must deal with, though beasts like the Leviathan don't hurt the Chimeran cause either.
The Leviathan is a hideous monster that stands 300 feet tall and throws our protagonist, Nathan Hale, around like a rag doll. It must be lured under a bridge where an explosive charge is planted. Only after this explosion blows a hole in the thing's skull can Hale finish it off with a rocket blow directly to its brain. Yeah, it's a little bit gruesome.
The Riftworm is a gigantic worm that likes to eat COG Soldiers whole and sink entire cities. Obviously, it becomes a bit of a threat to the survival of mankind when it sets its sights on humanity's last refuge, Jacinto.
Marcus and company take an interesting (and incredibly bloody) approach to ending this menace: they climb inside it, exploring its innards and taking out its gigantic beating heart. Of course, had any of these guys actually completed high school, they would have no doubt remembered dissecting a worm in Sophomore Biology and finding out that worms have multiple hearts.
After severing critical arteries attached to three of this beast's hearts—all the while swimming around in sickening amounts of Riftworm blood—the creature finally goes down. Of course, Marcus and his gang decide that after all this, they should just sink Jacinto anyway. Way to think that one through ahead of time, guys.
Shadow of the Colossus is a game filled to the brim with ridiculously epic battles against all manner of gargantuan beasties. Of course, one fight takes the cake of epic-ness here: The Final Colossus.
Not only is this thing the size of a mountain, but it can easily destroy our hero with fireballs from an absurd distance. In order to even get close to this thing, Wander must navigate a series of tunnels, and once he arrives, he must scale the thing like some sort of perilous mechanical cliffside.
Now, this monster is epic in size alone, but the thing that completely seals its place on this list is the look in its eyes. After getting stabbed in the hand by a magic sword, it brings Wander up to its face and gazes upon him with curiosity. Not anger, fear, pain, or even annoyance. Just plain curiosity. That one look is by far the most unsettling thing in this entire game, as it shows just how little threat you pose to this thing. You're not even a mosquito; a mosquito would have at least caused a tiny amount of discomfort.
Of course, one should never underestimate the power of magic swords, and the beast ultimately falls. But, oh, what a fall it is, a fall that places Shadow of the Colossus firmly on the list of true video game masterpieces.
Metal Gear REX isn't as large as most of the other bosses on this list, but its sheer destructive power is staggering. A bipedal tank that can launch a nuclear strike against any country in the world, REX has the ability to annihilate entire nations before they ever know what hit them. And if this thing manages to launch a strike, it could potentially jump start World War 3, or worse yet, doom the planet to complete nuclear holocaust.
But does the U.S. send an army to take this thing down? Nope. They send one man; Solid Snake. The fate of the entire world rests upon this one man's shoulders, as he dodges a hail of gunfire and missiles. To tip the balance even further in REX's favor, one of Snake's old acquaintances shows up to bring some unresolved emotional issues to the surface.
As we all know, Snake is a man who can bury his emotional scars pretty deep inside, and he eventually prevails. But perhaps he should get some counseling afterward. I hear that leaving these kinds of issues unresolved can lead to premature aging.
Had you been around during the earlier part of the Roman Empire's dominance, Zeus would have pretty much been the guy you worshiped enthusiastically. Of course, if you had chosen to be one of the less fervent Zeus worshippers, you would most likely spent your life cowering in the corner and wetting yourself in fear that a lightning bolt would end your existence. Not only was Zeus a god, but he was the god that lorded over all the others. Let's just say this guy was not someone you'd ever want to pick a fight with.
But Kratos isn't afraid of this guy. Not at all. In his unending rage, he takes on Zeus like a man, face-to-face, in a battle that takes him into the very depths of Hades.
Ultimately, Kratos is a man who has challenged the king of the gods to a battle and walked away in one piece. No small feat, considering even gods would be afraid to do such a thing.
Lavos is a somewhat immortal creature who mostly lies dormant for millions of years. Of course, whenever he rears his ugly head, he rains down absurd amounts of destruction. In fact, he eventually brings about the Apocalypse in the year 1999.
After silently lording over the planet for over a half billion years, who is it who finally brings him down? A group of kids. Sure, they're aided by a time-traveling wizard, a medieval warrior-turned-frog, a robot from the future, and a prehistoric cave girl, but Chrono, Lucca, and Marle are mere teenagers when they confront this being.
Saving a planet from destruction by a beast as old as time? Not bad for a trio of rebellious teens on summer break.
I'm sure there are personal favorites and least favorites which failed to make this list, so, by all means, use the comments section below to plead the case for your entry, or to reopen the wounds of a horrid game worthy of an extra dash of salt.
By Josh Wirtanen
CCC Editor / Contributing Writer
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*