The 50 Best Video Game Endings Of All Time

The 50 Best Video Game Endings Of All Time

More than 13,000 fans voted for their favourite video game ending of all time for the Guinness Book of World Records 2012 Gamer Edition, and this is what they came up with? Call of Duty: Black Ops is the greatest video game ending of all time? Maybe I need to go play it again. Oh wait, BioShock made the list, it’s obviously complete BS.

“Conducted for the new Guinness World Records 2012 Gamer’s Edition book, the list will cause heated debate among passionate gamers and provide further evidence of the growing sophistication and popularity of video games.” So reads the official announcement that accompanied this list which, upon further scrutiny, is indeed a list of 50 video game names placed in some sort of order.

Just how accurate that order is remains up in the air.

Some of these make perfect sense. Metal Gear Solid 4? I’m not that much of a fan, but that ending was some powerful stuff. And who can forget the sweeping cinematic ending of Sonic the Hedgehog. Wait, are thy talking 2006 Sonic the Hedgehog? Oh god, I hope not.

Check out the full list below and wonder with me where they found the 13,000 gamers that helped vote it into existence. Sounds like one or two of them might have misunderstood and just voted for their favourite game.

50. Resident Evil 4 49. Star Wars: Knights of the old Republic 48. Ratchet & Clank: a Crack in Time 47. Crysis 2 46. The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion 45. Call of Duty: World at War 44. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II 43. Half-Life 2: Episode Tow 42. Super Metroid 41. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess 40. New Super Mario Bros. Wii 39. inFamous 38. Fallout 3 37. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 36. Gears of War 2 35. Bioshock 34. Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty 33. Sonic Adventures 2 32. Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater 31. Kingdom Hearts II 30. Mass Effect 29. Super Mario Galaxy 28. Sonic the Hedgehog 27. Metal Gear Solid 26. Assassin’s Creed II 25. Assassin’s Creed 24. Shadow of the Colossus 23. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare 22. Kingdom Hearts 21. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves 20. Super Mario Galaxy 2 19. Mass Effect 2 18. Grand Theft Auto IV 17. Portal 2 16. Assassins Creed: Brotherhood 15. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time 14. Halo: Combat Evolved 13. Halo 3 12. Pokémon Black and White 11. Super Mario Bros 10. Heavy Rain 9. Final Fantasy VII 8. Metal Gear Solid 4 7. Portal 6. Red Dead Redemption 5. God of War 4. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 3. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 2. Halo: Reach 1. Call of Duty: Black Ops


  • i dont see how heavy rain made the list since the ending i had was probably different from the ending another person may have had

    • That’s the beauty of it. I loved both endings I got, and both were very different. It was personal.

      What’s wrong with Bioshock’s ending, people, by the way?

  • Yes, 3 halo games within the top 20
    But really, what was the ending of Black Ops? I never played it but for a one off in a series of repetitiveness I don’t expect very big things

    • To be completely honest the single player campaign was the only decent thing in black ops, but it still didnt make up for the abysmall multiplayer and terrible textures.

  • Really? who are these people that were surveyed? 5 year olds, Call of duty for a start doesnt have a story. Its just alot of flash (but fun). These are all main stream games. There are way better games with fantastic stories like Ace combat 5, Tales of vesperia etc.

    How did super smash bros get in there, there is no story what so ever!

  • FF7’s ending was crap. I even thought that the first time I played it. “All those hours of playing… as THIS is the best they can give me?”

    FF8 or FF12 would have been a much better choice of ending. Heck, even FF10-2’s ending was more meaningful.

    • People on the US-site can’t see articles that originate from Kotaku AU. So you’ll see US writers regurgitate AU articles from time to time. It’s just something that happens.

  • Pokemon made the list? That’s not right, considering half of the game unlocks after you complete the main storyline. There’s hardly an ending to it.

  • I guess I can see why Black Ops is number one, due to the screen cap above that whole “America Fuck Yeah!” style of the end made me laugh.

  • KOTOR should have been wayy higer than that, especially the dark side ending.

    Final Fantasy X should have been on there too, like no 1. Possibly the most bitter sweet ending of anything I’ve read/watched/played.

    • Totally agree on both points. The ending of Final Fantasy X emotionally moved me in a way that no movie or game had before.

      As Phantom said, given that Super Smash Bros is on here it looks like everyone just voted for their favourite game.

      • Correct, and as CoD fags are likely to be K:D figure loving fags they’re likely to buy a douche fag figure fag book.

        Did I fit in enough fag references for CoD? I might go listen to some XBL CoD chat and see how many times I hear ‘fag’ now.

  • The 50 Best “Mainstreamish” Video Game Endings Of All Time
    Fixed it for you.

    Also my vote’s with Nier… maybe To the The Moon.

  • What utter BS, I love MGS but the endings tend to be fairly preachy, they don’t really belong in theis list, FF VII does not realy belong as high as it is (and maybe not on the list at all) and it’s still one of my favorite games, now the ending of FF VIII was wonderful…

    This seems more like “peoples favorite games” than “best endings”

  • Wait. Halo: Reach? As in, Halo: The one in which everybody knows from the start exactly what will happen? Halo: Everybody dies you have to be deaf blind and dumb not to know that?
    And Black Ops? I played the campaign twice maybe three times, and I still don’t remember it’s ending.
    Maybe my definition of a good video game ending is wrong or something.

    • I assumed it got that position because of the “Lone Wolf” mission, which I actually thought was a brilliant way to end it.

  • MGS4 and MGS1 BEFORE MGS3? Wha? I’m a massive MGS nerd and even I realise that snake eater had a much more cohesive and interesting plot as well as an amazing ending (that was kind of a beginning at the same time).

    • Yeah I was shocked at that. MGS1 didn’t have so much of an emotional ending as it was extremely revolutionary for the time. I mean CODs style of blockbuster direction can be compared to MGS1. But yeah MGS4 – im not gonna go on a rant but this is my least favourite interactive movie i have watched

  • Oh and Red Dead’s ending SUCKED. It was so flat and anti climactic. The first, sort of ‘half’ of the ending was almost out of nowhere and then the ‘second half’ was just… nothing. Lucky the game itself was so good.

  • The first Mass Effect had a way better ending than Mass Effect 2. Climactic space battle with choices that carry across to the next game. It gave me chills, I’m actually struggling to remember how the second one ended, I can only remember the stupid human reaper boss.

  • I actually laughed at the Black Ops ending. Total Bay-gasm
    All it needed was a superimposed American flag in the background to be complete

  • What? No Wing Commander 3? C’mon, he blows up the entire Kilrathi planet ffs!! And a war that’s been going on for generations finally ends with the Kilrathi surrender.

    No Ico? A heart wrenching ending to an amazing game.

    lulz at this “list”

    I guess gaming in the 90s didn’t exist…

    • ICO definitely deserves a place in the top 10. Such an incredible ending to an awesome game!

      Still, you know how these lists are. None are ever the way you think they should be.

  • Presenting the top 50 most mainstream games in order of mainstreamness.
    Where the hell is Braid? That had an awesome ending.

    • To witness the awesome ending in Braid, one must first be able to complete Braid. An accomplishment which I doubt most of the people who voted in this poll were capable of.

  • Red Dead was awesome. How many games kill off the protagonist in such a way. Portal 2 should be number one. I’m in SPACE!!!

    • I didn’t cry but the ending in FFX, then going through and getting the 100% ending in FFX-2 has to be some of the best gaming I’ve ever experienced.

  • So this is just a list of popular games that have endings?
    If there was an actual list of good game endings, one of my votes would be for Syberia.

  • agree, red dead redemption was awesome! fyi the game ended with the burial scene. everything after that is not the game. its just messing around.

    also: freespace!

    blowing up that giant ship in the subspace to save earth, at the same time destroying your only way back home.

  • Black Ops ending was generic if anything and shouldn’t even be on the list as well as Super Mario Bros, really? “Your Quest is over we present a new quest, press B button to select a world”

    Games I would have included would have been Final Fantasy X and Command and Conquer Tiberium Sun Nod Campaign,

    I also think Red Dead Redemption and Portal 2 should have been 1 and 2 respectively

  • Sigh… god forbid there would be a game from the nineties in this list… something that isnt sonic… like wtf Sonic?

  • I already discussed Portal 1/2 in the other article, and the part I mentioned about FF7 got cut off because text limit. So let’s talk about Halo.

    When I first played Halo’s campaign with a friend on his xbox 8 or so years ago, it was a great night. We stayed up until the wee hours and made it to the library before we had to go to bed. The next day we finished it off. I don’t know where “the ending” starts, but the last level or two were pretty awesome. You had to go back to the crashed spaceship, blow its engines and get the hell out of there. And then The Maw happens and it remains one of my favourite parts from the Halo franchise. 6 minutes to speed through hell on a warthog, there’s no real time to kill anything. You barely make it to your ride in time, fly the hell out of there and then everything explodes, saving the universe from the Flood (well this was before Halo 2 etc existed). It might not sound like much on paper, but it was awesome and has left quite the impression.

    So when Halo 3 decided that the last part of the game would be spent on an in-universe recreation of the original Halo instillation, the last level would be both a homage to Halo 1’s Maw and in another way, Halo 1’s Silent Cartographer, well, yeah. That ending blew my tits off. Very similar to the Maw, except this time the ground your treading is constantly falling, and if you’re not fast enough you’re either trapped or you fall to your death. At the end you just make it in time, pull off a sweet jump and barely make it in the ship. But then its not over! You nearly fall out. You see the new Halo activating behind you, destroying itself. It’s all very pretty.

    But then you go through the portal BUT WAIT Master Chief doesn’t make it. Were it so easy! The Arbiter’s story is over, Master Chief is stuck in deep space and it’ll be a long, long time before he’s rescued.


    So Halo 3’s ending, it was pretty good I guess. It wasn’t just Halo 3’s ending, it was also the end to Halo as a story.

    Then Halo 3: ODST, Halo: Reach and Halo 4, 5 and 6 came out.

    Halo Reach’s ending is pretty good too. All hope is lost, everyone you’ve come to known dies, except for Jun and Halsey, you make sure the Pillar of Autumn can leave and that Halo 1 can begin. After the ship flies off, you decide to take as many covenant bastards out as you can. You kill a few, yeah. But they keep coming. Your ammo’s getting low. You’ve taken too much damage, and now your helmet is cracking. You decide to take it off and fight some more. But then they eventually get the jump on you and you get shanked. Congratulation, you win! It was a pretty good ending.

    Are any of those better than Blops? I don’t know. You decide.

    Did Portal 2 and MGS3 deserve to do better? I sure think so.

  • so just wanna put it out there, Brothers in Arms: Hells Highway had an amzing story based on what its like to be a soldier and dealing with the loss of fallen brothers, as far as war stories go i’d say its on par with that of Saving Private Ryan.

    And where’s L.A Noire???? that had an ending worthy of a top 50 list…. :insert professor farnswoth caption “i dont want to live on this planet anymore”:

  • Really not the kind of thing that should be included in “World Records” – looks simply like a popularity list – I mean how is Twilight Princess on there but not Wind Waker – well probably more people played Twilight Princess more recently!

    I notice though Halo 2 missed out completely – seems like everyone still hates that ending!

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