If there's one thing missing from a lot of modern video games, it's good boss fights. Back in the old days, video games were all about building up to a point where the player met up with some sort of final boss that would test everything they learned throughout the game.
Nowadays, most games reach their climax with something important to the narrative, but less soul-crushing and difficult. That's perfectly fine, and I still enjoy modern video games immensely.
But it feels like the big final boss battle has fallen out of favor. Only a few gaming studios, like FromSoftware, haven't forgotten them.
With that in mind, let's take a look at the most frustrating video game bosses of all time. If you want to test your video game skills, these are the boss battles you need to play!
7. Emerald Weapon (Final Fantasy VII)
Emerald Weapon isn't the last boss of Final Fantasy VII, but that doesn't stop it from being an exercise in anger.
This boss makes fighting Sephiroth look like an absolute pushover just based on the staggeringly high HP pool it has. And if that wasn't enough, the fight has a time limit.
Just thinking about it makes me want to run into the corner and cry.
6. Alma (Ninja Gaiden)
If you like fast-paced action games that'll truly put your video game skills to the test, Ninja Gaiden is the game for you.
It feels like Alma was designed to counter any tactic the player could use against her, making it a purely defensive fight that required near-perfect timing all throughout.
One mistake could be catastrophic, causing the player to start the fight over. It's pure rage on a disc.
5. Skolas (Destiny)
The Skolas fight in the Destiny's House of Wolves expansion is a time-and-place kind of difficult fight, as it's been patched and made more balanced over the years.
Basically, the game originally had certain modifiers that made the fight nearly impossible, as Skolas and his minions did absurd damage to players. Beating him with a group was one of the most satisfying feelings in the world, but it was no easy task.
4. Orphan of Kos (Bloodborne)
FromSoftware makes the list again, this time with its Orphan of Kos boss from the Bloodborne expansion, The Old Hunters.
Not only is this boss incredibly difficult to defeat, but it's also tough to look at because of how gross it is.
Nothing about this fight is pleasant (except beating it), and it'll test your ability to dodge and hit like no other boss in the game.
3. Yellow Devil (Mega Man)
The Mega Man games are some of the most difficult games ever created, seemingly built for the purpose of trying the player's patience.
And when it comes to Mega Man bosses, few are as rage-inducing as Dr. Wily's Yellow Devil.
This giant enemy spends most of the fight immune to damage, and when he does take damage, it feels like you're hitting him with a pea shooter. Success is a test of endurance and willpower.
2. The Nameless King (Dark Souls III)
In a game that's filled with difficult boss encounters, The Nameless King is the one that'll make you want to break your controller in half and scream for mercy.
The multi-phase fight is so difficult that it seems insurmountable. In fact, it is impossible for many players, who often decide to give up and stop playing. It's that bad.
It's one of those fights where once you think you have him defeated, the fight is actually just getting started.
1. Mike Tyson (Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!)
For many gamers, when they think about banging their heads against an extremely difficult boss, Mike Tyson is the first one that comes to mind.
The degree of precision required to match Tyson's difficult patterns is off the charts. Beating Mike Tyson in Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! has long been a badge of honor for retro gamers.
Among modern gamers who consider themselves hardcore and skilled, this is a truly legendary fight of epic difficulty.
Want More Hard? Try Soulslike Gamef
Why would anyone put themselves through these ridiculously hard boss battles? Well, for many gamers, it's all about that feeling of achievement that comes when you finally succeed.
The overwhelming mix of relief and sense of accomplishment make all of the suffering worthwhile—assuming you can actually get through the fights! And this appeal has turned into its own genre.
Known as Soulslike games, there's an entire genre of frustratingly tough gaming experiences that lean into these aspects. If you love hard games and you haven't played them yet, you're missing out!