The world is divided into two types of people: those who love plot twists and those who hate them. I personally love them because I love surprises because a plot twist can be a gamer’s best friend. In the last decade, developers have started to apply plot twists to video games more frequently and today this literary technique is one of the most beloved by fans because it brings more power to the history.
Today we are going to be choosing the 10 best plot twists in the history of video games so sit back and enjoy this top. Let’s begin and spoiler alert by the way.
10. The princess is running from you – Braid
Braid is probably the less known video game of this list, but despite that Braid received critical acclaim because of its innovative gameplay and became the highest rated title on Xbox Live. You control Tim and with the power to reverse time you try to save a prince from a bad knight.
But you then learn that, in fact, everything was in reverse and the princess was actually running from you in order to be with the real hero: the knight. The scary thing about this is that you were never the hero.
9. Nicole was dead all along – Dead Space
Inspired by movies like Event Horizon; Dead Space is one of the best horror titles ever made and also it is a game that I uninstalled it after two hours because it made me feel very uncomfortable and paranoid, but that is good because that is exactly what a horror game should make you feel.
During the game you see our protagonist Isaac interacting with his wife Nicole but it turns out that was nothing but an illusion because she was dead since the beginning of the game when Isaac boarded the USG Ishimura.
8. Chara’s Introduction – Undertale
This character is actually you if you go to the dark path, for real. Chara is one of the evilest characters in the Undertale universe and if you follow the Genocide run you will turn into this demonic being near the end of this route.
The Genocide run is usually the last run the gamers play because it is pretty creepy and a unique experience, but the fact that Chara appears here makes the Genocide Run ever creepier and more nightmarish, and still to this day most Undertale players still get scared during this iconic jumpscare.
7. Viktor Reznov died in the beginning – Call of Duty: Black Ops
The Call of Duty series is one of the most famous video games series ever made and also is my personal favorite video game franchise. While I prefer World at War instead of Black Ops, this game give us one of the most unexpected plot twists ever created.
During interrogation Mason recalls his adventures with Reznov but later it is revealed that he died during the prison break and all Mason experienced were hallucinations created by the many brainwashes he underwent during his incarceration. It was a big surprise because Viktor Reznov is a fan favorite for many Call of Duty fans.
6. Konrad committed suicide and you are the true villain – Spec Ops: The Line
Spec Ops: The Line gave me more than I have ever asked for and I still remember how the game made me question myself and my actions. You control Walker, a captain who leads a small team into a destroyed Dubai with the mission of recovering survivors of a sandstorm but they discover that a man called John Konrad has taken control of the armed forces of Dubai.
While trying to find him, Walker and his team commit many atrocities under Konrad’s instructions but in the end, Walker realizes that Konrad was dead the whole time and all the actions were done by Walker himself.
5. Tidus was a dream – Final Fantasy X
Final Fantasy X is the best game in the series from my perspective and despite using a repetitive plot twist, it was perfectly executed and became unforgettable. Towards the end of the game, we learn that Tidus is a dream; a dream from the Fayth and once Sin is destroyed, Tidus will fade and disappear.
The thing that makes this plot twist so good, and satisfying in a bittersweet way, is that from the beginning we thought that Yuna would be the one to sacrifice herself to save the world, and the moment we learn that its Tidus instead is one of the most emotional moments ever.
4. That’s one less loose end – Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Call of Duty makes it back on the list but not because I am a big fan. The critically acclaimed Modern Warfare trilogy gave us many moments that we will remember forever, but without a doubt the Shepherd’s betrayal was so unexpected that it overshadowed the infamous “No Russian” mission.
After fighting against countless enemy soldiers, you try to escape and when you see Shepherd arriving with allied forces you feel hope, but that hope gets shattered to pieces when he shoots both you and Ghost at point blank range. After this scene, you know that you cannot trust in anyone anymore.
3. You were Darth Revan – Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Knights of the Old Republic is often considered the best video game based on Star Wars and the game is the reason why BioWare was at the top during this period. This game gave us one of the greatest plot twists in gaming history.
Throughout the game we heard about a diabolical Sith named Darth Revan and we spend much of our time cleaning the mess made by this Sith. Then, it is revealed that the main character is actually an amnesiac Darth Revan himself. It doesn’t sound very impactful but at the time it was very jaw-dropping.
2. James killed Mary – Silent Hill 2
Silent Hill 2 is a masterpiece because the game was a horror game with an impeccable plot that made every horror fan both happy and scared. The game is centered around our protagonist James, a man who is constantly haunted by the circumstances surrounding the death of Mary, his wife.
Throughout the game we see countless monsters representing his grief but everything leads to a heartbreaking revelation; James was the one who killed his bedridden wife with a pillow as a form of euthanasia. Then you learn that all these haunting events were manifested because of his guilt.
1. Would you kindly…? – BioShock
BioShock’s plot is beyond perfection and the plot twist presented in this game was so unique that is arguably considered the best video game plot twist ever created. At the halfway point of BioShock, it is revealed that all out past actions were nothing of free will and that the phrase “Would you kindly?” is a hypnotic trigger for Jack and used by the villain Frank Fontaine to control you the whole time throughout the game.
When you understand the weight of the phrase you will understand you were under mind control since the beginning without noticing. A beautiful and shocking plot twist.