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Top 10 Shocking Moments in Videogames

VO: Dan Paradis
Script written by Max Bledstein Woah, I did not see that coming. Join as we countdown our picks for the Top 10 Shocking Moments in Videogames. For this list, we ranked the most unexpected and unforgettable moments in games that threw us off guard. As hard as it was to choose in the cases of some games, we stuck to our usual one per franchise rule. And just so you know, this list does contain mature content, as well as some of the spoileriest spoilers ever seen, so you’ve been warned. Special Thanks to our users "Jack Morris" "Brady" "Ty Milko" "Warriors9576" and many other users for suggesting this topic on our website WatchMojo.comsuggest

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Script written by Max Bledstein

Top 10 Shocking Moments in Video Games

Woah, I did not see that coming. Welcome to and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the top 10 shocking moments in video games.
For this list, we ranked the most unexpected and unforgettable moments in games that threw us off guard. As hard as it was to choose in the cases of some games, we stuck to our usual one per franchise rule. And just so you know, this list does contain mature content, as well as some of the spoileriest spoilers ever seen, so you’ve been warned.

#10: Raiden
“Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty” (2001)

The Metal Gear series has had enough shocking moments & plot twists to make M. Night Shyamalan go: “Geez tone it down”. But we’re going with a moment that irks hardcore fans the most and one that’s as much of a design choice as it was a plot twist. In one of the biggest bait and switches ever, After an awesome intro level on a oil tanker, you’re thrown a huge curveball when you were forced to play as Mr. Glam-Rock for the rest of the game. No offense to him, but he just doesn’t have the cool factor of a legend like Snake, and did we really need a section playing as him running around naked?

#9: Kefka destroys the world
“Final Fantasy VI” (1994)

Aeris’s death at the hands of Sephiroth in “Final Fantasy VII” may have been the saddest moment in this RPG series, but it was nowhere near as gamechaning as this moment. About two thirds of the way through the game, when we least expected it, the evil general Kefka betrayed his superior, Emperor Gestahl, when he devastated the planet’s landscape. This changes everything; your party is separated, most of the plant life is wiped out, and literally everything you explored during the game is now in ruins.

#8: Dom finds his wife
“Gears of War 2” (2008)

Throughout this title, Corporal Dominic Santiago is intent on finding his missing wife Maria, who disappears after their two children die when the subterranean Locust Horde emerge from underground and she can’t handle the depression. Although many didn’t have high hopes that he’d ever find her, he actually does, sort of, just not in the condition that we’d hoped for. When he finally locates her, she’s been imprisoned by the Locust, and processed beyond recovery. He has no choice but to put her out of her miser, a heartbreaking moment in an otherwise non-stop action fest.

#7: Carley’s Death
“The Walking Dead: Episode - ‘Long Road Ahead’” (2012)

Unsurprisingly, this grim zombie apocalypse graphic adventure has no shortage of unexpected twists, like when protagonist Lee gets bitten in the fourth episode, but this moment caught us completely off guard. When Lily gives Carley a hard time for harassing the group about stolen supplies, we were annoyed, but we didn’t expect anything too drastic to come of it. It turns out we were wrong, because Lilly snaps, creating an unforgettably a surprise moment that comes of out nowhere.

#6: Dr. Salvador - Instant Death
“Resident Evil 4” (2005)

Sure there’s a lot of monsters that frighten us in this series, but none that made us go HOLY CRAP like this guy. The sound of his chainsaw itself is scary, but we weren’t expecting how dangerous he would be, since you can survive multiple scythes and axes to the chest and take small damage. This is a videogame after all, nothing’s as deadly as it should be in real life, right? Wrong. He will take your head clean off and kill you with one hit, leaving your jaw on the floor, but figuratively and in-game.

#5: No Russian
“Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2” (2009)

(“Remember: No Russian”) Those simple words start one of the most infamous levels in video game history. There are other shocking moments in the series, like when the nuclear device detonates in this game’s predecessor, but this took the cake. Listening to the screams of civilians running for their lives as you’re undercover as part of a terrorist firing squad, was so controversial that the level made news headlines. You can skip the level, but then you’ll miss out on another shocking plot twist.

#4: You’re a girl
“Metroid” (1986)

By now, it’s well known now that the protagonist of these legendary Nintendo shooters is female, but in the 80’s gamers didn’t have a clue when they fired up the original. Either our gender bias or just our slavish obedience to common convention had us convinced that Samus was either a guy or a robot. It also doesn’t help that the game’s original manual referred to Samus as a “he.” But it does hint at something big if you finish the game fast enough.

#3: White Phosphorus
“Spec Ops: The Line” (2012)

This third-person tactical shooter has been renowned by gamers and critics alike for its moral complexity, and it reached its height with this shocker. When you wind up at the heavily guarded gate, you decide to use White Phosphorus to make short of the enemy fortification. It’s nasty stuff, Google it for yourself. But the trigger-happy use of such a controversial weapon has grave consequences, when you soon find out your poorly thought out actions result in the deaths of all these civilians. There are no war heroes in this game.

#2: “Would You Kindly?”
“BioShock” (2007)

Even without having our actions controlled by a nefarious businessman, this one was a no-brainer for our list. As you navigate the gorgeous underwater city of Rapture through the eyes of protagonist Jack Ryan, you’re guided via radio by the helpful voice of Atlas—or so you think. This being a “Shock” game, Atlas betraying you was an easy guess, but it’s the how that’s important here. You think his phrase “Would You Kindly” is just some sort of expression he uses; he’s Irish, they funny things right? But you find out that he’s actually using you as a pawn in a war with the magnate Andrew Ryan, and he’s been controlling everything you’ve done through said phrase.

Before we get to our number one, let’s take a look at some honorable mentions:

Tali’s suicide
“Mass Effect 3” (2012)

SHODAN’s reveal
“System Shock 2” (1999)

Clayface is the Joker
“Batman: Arkham City” (2011)

Torture Scene
“Grand Theft Auto V” (2013)

Cutting off your own fingers
“Heavy Rain” (2010)

#1: Darth Revel’s Reveal
“Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic” (2003)

In retrospect, it’s no surprise that the franchise that gave us “Luke, I am your father” would give us the most shocking moment in all of gaming too, but we still didn’t see this one coming. Throughout the game you’re given hints of a former Sith Lord who brought the republic to its knees in a brutal war, only to mysteriously vanish. So prepare to have you game turned upside down when you find out that Darth Reven, is you! For those who haven’t played the game, imagine what your reaction would be if you found out that you were Hitler with amnesia.

Do you agree with our list? What shocking moment in video games took your breath away? For more surprising top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to

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