In light of Castlevania: Lords of Shadows 2’s torturous garden scene, I’ve decided to cobble together some more sections of everyone’s favorite games that reduce grown men to tears of frustration. We all remember the classics of Double Dragon’s final level or the Battle Toads motorcycle level (there’s a spot in the deepest pits of hell waiting for the makers of that one), so I want to look at some other newer games that come close to the same levels of sheer agony.
Metal Gear Solid 3 – Fighting ‘The End’
This is one of the many boss fights that populate the prequel game of Metal Gear Solid 3. You’re fighting the ancient sniper in the jungle who is frustrating as hell to beat. There’s a radio communication with EVA that tells you about your foe and how you go about beating him. However, when you cut through all the fancy talk, she’s basically saying ‘you’re f*cked’. He’s constantly on the move (and quite spry for a man over a century old), he’s practically invisible and he throws flashbangs if you get too close which blind you so he can beat his impossibly hasty retreat into invisibility again. Not only that, but the fight takes place across three separate playable areas, so as you’re tracking him (hope you thought to use your thermal gear!) you have to take into account he may have moved to a different area all together! I didn’t realize I could get such satisfaction out of helping an old man into his grave.
Here’s a 10 minute version that is sped up at times for viewing purposes:
Final Fantasy X – Mount Gagazet Boss Battle
This one is more of a personal issue, but it can be applied to all RPG’s. What happened to me here is you climb a massive mountain that takes quite some time and just as you’re about to cross over into the next section, one of the villains, the dastardly Maester Seymour, shows up to stop you. No biggie, just use all your acquired skills and give him a thrashing, right? Except I had maybe rushed my way through the last section in my haste to see where the story went next and was horribly under prepared for this boss fight. Here’s where it applies to RPG’s in general; I had saved it right before the fight and couldn’t go back and get the necessary power-ups that would’ve made this fight doable. This has happened to countless people over countless games and it never gets any easier. It is always possible to win, but not before you’ve torn large sections of your hair out as you suffer another defeat after a 45 minute battle for the eighth time. Side note, even fully powered up, this Maester Seymour battle is still annoyingly difficult.
This is how you’re supposed to do that particular battle, I guess.
Grand Theft Auto 3 – Steal 3 Cars in Under 5 Minutes
I can’t seem to find a consistent mission name for this one, so we’ll just leave it at that. You’re commissioned by Yakuza boss Kenji Kasen to steal 3 cars and have them in the garage in pristine condition before the timer runs out. Sure, all it takes to complete this one is to take it slow and stea – the timer is 5 minutes?! You have to go fast, but not too fast cause if you smash it up, you’ve got to get it fixed and the garage doesn’t stop the timer. So very many times I was so close to finishing when I’d hit something and have to go to the garage have and then timer would run out on me. Once, I was literally making the last turn into the alley for the garage with just enough time to spare when I got blindsided by another car. The controller I was using at the time, well, he didn’t make it.
This guy clearly had the route memorized:
Devil May Cry 3 – Boss Battles
The Devil May Cry series is a lot of fun as it blends the hack and slash dynamic with blazing guns as you fight hordes and hordes of demons while keeping your hair pretty and stylish at the same time. It also built a story that ended the second game with a cliff hanger that they just never went back to, which has always been a bit of a problem for me. Anyway, we get to the third game, a prequel (which is already so aggravating), and it is classic Dante! Shooting and slashing his way through monsters and having a grand time doing it… and then you get to a boss fight.
All the boss fights are so hard and so tedious that it makes the rest of the game, which is actually pretty difficult in its own right, look like child’s play. The fight with Vergil, in particular, will make you cry again and again and again.
How hard are the boss fights? This is all the boss fight cut together with lead in videos… it’s 90 minutes long.
Max Payne – Blood Trails
So here you are, making your way through a sea of mobsters one slow motion bullet at a time, all the while haunted by the memories of your dead family and wondering why you let this brilliant grasp of the English language go to waste. Then you get drugged and you have to navigate Max Payne’s tortured dreams and find your family before they’re killed again. While your wife screams out for you… And the baby cries. Forever. Not even turning the sound off so you didn’t have to listen to the wailings of that baby (I stopped caring if the addicts got to it or not) could offset the torture that is the blood trails. My god, the blood trails. If something were to ever stop you from playing a game out of anger, it would be this.
This guy gets hilariously frustrated playing this. Skip to the 5 minute mark to get right to the hideous blood trails.
Dark Souls – Blight Town
You’re playing Dark Souls and you’ve just come to a place called Blight Town. Quick check; do you have poison resistant equipment? Do you have top notch armor and weapons? Do you have wings to fly when you get knocked off the edge for 13th time in a row? Do you have 127,854 potions to cure yourself of the inevitable poisoning and constant need to heal yourself? Do you also have a gun nearby for when it gets to be too much and you want to either end the game or your own life?
Then, just to make everything just a little bit worse, there’s the frame rate problem. Yeah, Blight Town is the worst.
This is a ‘quick’ walk through by the most boring man on the planet.
God of War – Every Single Time Hades is Involved
No game encapsulates the old school dynamic of impossible gaming like God of War. Throughout the entire trilogy (depending on how you feel about the arms in the second one), anytime you wander into a part of the game that involves Hades you had better reach for those anti-psychotics because you may murder someone before it’s over. The battle with Hades in the third one alone is worth this list, but there’s so much more to be angry about in the original. There’s the Blades of Hades as you walk along the rafters above the giant statue which has caused me to turn the game off dozens of times. Even just getting through Hell in the first one is a nightmare. With its rotating veins(?) of blades and the moving segments of bone or the horrible camera movements that cause you to leap to your death as it throws off your depth perception is all adding to the frustration. Of course none of this comes close to the infamous Tower of Blades. What makes the Tower of Blades so very dickish is that after you’ve finally, FINALLY, made it up this tower and that sense of relief washes over you… there’s the second one. The crying and wailing that accompanied seeing this the first time was Biblical.
Here’s the whole rage filled Tower of Blades segment:
Sound off below and let me know your favorite hair pulling segments that I missed!