Happy Halloween, Dorksters! I hope your holiday weekend went well. I spent mine watching the Hellraiser series, both versions of The Thing, and shotgunning the entire Alien quadrilogy, relishing in every gory, dripping moment. I thought I'd share some of my delightfully dark taste with you in the spirit of the season. So bust out the popcorn and the barf bags, because below are six of the most haunting, goriest death scenes in video games. Abandon all hope, ye who enter this Dorklyst.
Originally, this list was going to be comprised entirely of player deaths, and all the bad sh*t that happens when we fail to press the jump button at exactly the right time or just barely miss dodging that axe murderer's swing. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized there were some fantastically gory deaths of NPCs, some of them were the most memorable of the whole lot. Such is the tale of Andrew Ryan's death in Bioshock.
In movies, we often see characters knocked out with a single headbutt or smack with a blunt object. Bioshock gets a little closer to what would actually happen if you were to strike the soft, squishy scalp of a human with the hard metal of, oh say, a golf club. The slurred screams of Ryan echo hauntingly throughout Rapture as his face twists, and the squit! sound of blood from his temples seals the deal. A man chooses. A slave obeys.
Manhunt is a game with a bare bones plot to thread together gory murder after gory murder. There are so many to choose from, too. Maybe the brutal hack, hack, hack, hack, decapitation of the machete kill? The wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle of the wire beheading? All fine and good, but I'm gonna go with the one that makes my stomach drop thinking about it: chainsaw piledriver.
With the Manhunt chainsaw, you can invert the blade like you're about to stick a post in the ground, and shove it straight down into someone's sweet, succulent gray matter. The chainsaw cracks open the victim's head like a ripe melon, and ventures down into the chest cavity for a good moment or two, churning up their insides like a blender. Mmm, who's hungry?
Resident Evil 4 was one of the first games to bring back the true consequences of failure. Whereas many games now have checkpoints coming out the wazoo, it was refreshingly difficult and heart-poundingly exciting. For those who've seen the film adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's Dagon, it was doubly haunting in the early stages, as the village and villagers themselves are set up much the same as they are in the famed town of Innsmouth.
An unrelenting swarm of infected approach you, and as you fire into the crowd, you realize this is not a battle you can win. Instead, the game forces you to go from fight to flight, running into buildings and barricading windows. But these enemies are still relatively slow. You can elude them. Besides, they're not going to utterly destroy you in one hit or anything.
Then you hear the chainsaw. And in stunned horror, you realize you haven't moved quick enough. The blade hits your neck with forceful weight, the muscle and bone give only the slightest resistance before your head is lopped off completely. Welcome back Resident Evil.