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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. This is perfectly fine, and I enjoy modern video games immensely, but it feels like the big final boss battle has definitely fallen out of favor (though From Software and some developers definitely haven’t forgotten them, as we’ll get to soon).
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!
1. Mike Tyson
Game: 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 is a badge of honor gamers still carry with them today, as it’s a feat not everyone can say they accomplished.
2. The Nameless King
Game: 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 for many players, who just end up giving up and not playing anymore. When you think you have him defeated, get ready, because the fight is really just starting.
3. Yellow Devil
Game: Mega Man
The Mega Man games are some of the most difficult games ever created. It seems like they’re built for the purpose of trying the player’s patience. When it comes to Mega Man bosses, few are as rage-inducing as Dr. Wily’s Yellow Devil. The giant enemy spends most of the fight immune to damage, and when he does take damage, it feels like you’re hitting him a pea shooter.
4. Orphan Of Kos
Game: Bloodborne: The Old Hunters
From Software makes the list again, this time with its Orphan Of Kos boss from a Bloodborne expansion. 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, of course), and it’ll test your ability to dodge and hit like no other in the game.
Game: Destiny: House of Wolves
The Skolas fight in the Destiny: House of Wolves expansion is a time and place kind of difficult fight, as it’s been patched and made more balanced over time. Basically, the game 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.
Game: 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.
7. Emerald Weapon
Game: 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.
Hard but Satisfying!
Why would anyone put themselves through these ridiculously-hard boss battles? It’s all about that feeling you get when you finally succeed. The mix of relief and feeling of overwhelming accomplishment make all of the suffering worthwhile (assuming you can actually get through these fights successfully).