Sometimes, it’s about the journey instead of the destination, like how a story can have enjoyable parts even if the ending doesn’t quite succeed. But then there are some endings which are downright terrible and make you question your time and commitment. Let’s look at ten such horrible video game endings in 2022. Major spoilers follow, so beware.
Gotham Knights may not rank among the worst DC superhero storylines out there (that honor still goes to Countdown, personally), but its ending is pretty terrible. Remember the Court of Owls? Irrelevant to the actual villains, aka the League of Shadows/Assassins/Idiots. The final boss? Talia al Ghul, because Ra’s is on extended leave in the afterlife, and no other major villains are available.
But the absolute worst is all those months of the developer convincing us that Bruce Wayne is dead and gone. And he is, but then they bring him back to life with a Lazarus Pit in some brainwashed state, after which he’s beaten back to his senses, and then dies again in a heroic sacrifice. It was absurd to the point of comedy.
The Callisto Protocol
After Jacob discovers the truth behind the virus, he goes up against the mutated Leon Ferris, now known as Subject Alpha, to synthesize a vaccine for an infected Dani. He does so, but because he effectively played a part in the outbreak on Europa, Jacob decides to remain in the prison while Dani escapes and Black Iron self-destructs. Of course, that’s not the end, as Dr Caitlyn Mahler suddenly intervenes, revealing that the two can escape if they work together. Ferris suddenly does a jumpscare scream, and we cut to black.
If the characters were better developed over a longer period, this ending wouldn’t have felt as abrupt or unsatisfying (especially with how many questions still lingered). But it also doesn’t help that there’s story DLC in development, making it feel like you need to pay extra for the “real” ending, if not to see what happens in the sequel.
New Tales from the Borderlands
New Tales from the Borderlands suffers from many problems, like being worse than the first game in almost every way. It also has a multitude of endings, each more underwhelming than the last. But the best ending, which sees the core cast (and LOU13) survive to form Galactic Healing Incorporated with the help of Rhys, doesn’t feel like a decent pay-off at all. Contrast this to how the first game ended and how well each character was written (including Rhys, who’s beyond ruined), and it’s just insulting.
Dying Light 2 Stay Human
The whole climax of Dying Light 2 revolves around the X13 lab and how Waltz, the main villain, will launch missiles on Villedor, The City. Aiden enters the lab to stop him and discovers that Mia is Waltz’s daughter and not his sister. X13 is keeping her alive, and stopping the missile strike means shutting down the facility, which can kill her. After Waltz is defeated, you can either save Lawan or Mia. The former results in the city being destroyed, so that’s no good.
The latter sees X13 destroyed and Mia dead, but Villedor survives, and Hakon may even save Lawan if the right choices were made. Aiden ultimately leaves, presumably to a better ending. Overall, very anti-climatic and unsatisfying, especially the final fight.
Shadow Warrior 3
I wanted to like Shadow Warrior 3, even if it failed on its one premise – Zilla and Wang teaming up – to focus more on Hoji. It all leads to Wang assaulting the dragon again in the finale. However, this time he gets inside, activating Hoji’s Chi cannon and destroying it from within. There’s a deeper message about Wang getting his mojo back, which isn’t given enough time to develop so it’s hard to care.
By the end, Wang, Hoji, Zilla and Motoko celebrate the dragon’s death by eating parts of it. What about Kamiko, implied to be the dragon when Shadow Warrior 2 ended? What about the world at large? Doesn’t matter, don’t ask.
The “story” of Scorn involves two factions of the Homunculi waging war on an alien planet, one using biotech cyborgs and the other using exosuits. But none of that matters. Your story begins after the war is over and the planet’s ruined. First, you play as a character who tries to reach the citadel and fails, becoming a parasite. Then you play as another character, eventually infected by a parasite (which may be the first protagonist), and then undertake a big ol’ journey.
By the end, the parasite completely envelops the character, and they’re stuck in that form, seemingly for eternity. Who? Why? What was the point of any of this? Your guess is as good as ours.
The plot of ELEX 2 surrounds the coming of the Skyand, responsible for the comet that struck the planet Magalan and unleashed ELEX upon the populace. Jax must gather allies to fight them, but it’s revealed that ELEX was stolen from a cosmic being called the Singularity and the Skyand fear its return. The Skyand attempt to reshape the planet and maybe stand against the Singularity, or something, it’s hard to say. When they’re defeated, Singularity is seemingly the next threat for Magalan’s people.
If this sounds like Horizon Forbidden West’s ending, then you’re more or less correct. Just imagine it with worse characters, a much worse final battle, lame choices, horrible presentation, bugs, and lots of jank, and you’ve got ELEX 2.
Salt and Sacrifice
There’s some decent lore in Salt and Sacrifice, but ultimately it boils down to the Undone Sacrifice becoming such to stop the gods’ wrath. However, this results in the prevalence of Magehood, and Mages aren’t very nice, judging by the sheer number you need to hunt. In the end, upon defeating the Undone Sacrifice, you can either take its place and perpetuate the cycle or devour the tree it hangs on, causing the world to end. All in all, it just pales in comparison to the first game’s set-up and ending.
Martha is Dead
Martha has died. Who killed her? Well, her twin sister Guilia did. But actually, Martha isn’t dead. Guilia is Martha. The former is her alternate personality, formed through childhood trauma. She’s taken to the asylum and eventually slits her arms, regardless of your choices. It’s revealed later that Guilia has recovered, and a message says there’s always something to live for.
It comes across as a powerful message at first but is also out of left field. So much is made irrelevant, like the photographs, the gruesome dissections, and the last hours of the story. Opinions may vary on the usage of mental illness as a major twist in a horror story, but it feels awkwardly implemented here.
Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands
The problems with the ending of Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands are rooted in the Dragon Lord’s character. Throughout the story, it’s implied that he exists independent of the Bunker Master, aka Tina. However, this isn’t the case. As it turns out, the Dragon Lord was originally Tina’s character when she still played, who turned evil when she used the Sword of Souls to wipe out all evil in the game.
This caused Tina to rage quit and the Dragon Lord to swear vengeance on her…to no avail since she controls everything as the Bunker Master. None of this matters as the player defeats the Dragon Lord, uses the Sword of Souls to revive the Queen, and effectively spares the villain. He’s sentenced to 200 years of imprisonment for his crimes and seems mostly fine. Riveting stuff, indeed.
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