Top 20 Video Game Bosses Who Kill You No Matter What



Top 20 Video Game Bosses Who Kill You No Matter What

VOICE OVER: Ryan Wild WRITTEN BY: Mark Sammut
These video game bosses are not going away quietly. For this list, we'll be looking at those boss battles that really stack the odds against the player. Out countdown includes Great Serpent “Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice”, Dragon God “Demon's Souls”, T-00 “Resident Evil 2”, Darth Vader “Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order” and more!
Script written by Mark Sammut

Top 20 Video Game Bosses Who Kill You No Matter What

Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 20 Video Game Bosses Who Kill You No Matter What.

For this list, we’ll be looking at those boss battles that really stack the odds against the player.

Which initially unbeatable boss is the most satisfying to eventually defeat? Let us know in the comments!

#20: Vile

“Mega Man X” (1994)

As one of the earliest examples of an unbeatable boss, Vile shows up in "Mega Man X" while riding a mech to put X in his place. Vile's Ride Armor means the villain cannot be harmed by X; the game's protagonist is left to impotently blast away at the invincible boss. Even though Vile becomes a more compelling character in subsequent games, the former Maverick Hunter's debut appearance sets him up as a legitimate threat. "Mega Man X" also does a far better job of establishing Vile as a seemingly insurmountable threat than its PSP remake. In the latter, he actually gets an energy bar and must be defeated.

#19: Great Serpent

“Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice” (2019)

FromSoftware's games are all about cutting down massive bosses. "Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice" throws a curveball at players with the inclusion of the Great Serpent, however, who is met multiple times during the playthrough and cannot be defeated until the third encounter. The first two times Sekiro runs into the Great Serpent, the goal is survival and not victory; naturally, since much like every other FromSoftware game, the boss can kill the protagonist pretty easily. In the final encounter, the Great Serpent ultimately goes down without putting up much of a fight in the Sunken Valley. That being said, there is also a second Great Serpent who just straight-up cannot be killed by Sekiro.

#18: Chris Walker

“Outlast” (2013)

Invulnerable bosses are a particularly popular tool in survival horror, as few things instill a sense of helplessness like hiding in the dark from a burly monster who cannot be hurt. "Outlast's" Mount Massive Asylum has its share of unsettling inmates, but Chris Walker stands out as one of the most destructive and dangerous. Throughout the game, Walker stalks the asylum's grounds, killing potential hosts for the Walrider. This puts the ex-military Variant on a collision course with the protagonist, Miles. While Walker's unimpressive walking speed does make him easier to avoid, that doesn’t stop the Variant from being incredibly intimidating.

#17: Slender Man

“Slender: The Eight Pages” (2012)

Fueled by creepy internet memes, "Slender: The Eight Pages" drops an unnamed protagonist in a dark forest with only a flashlight to illuminate the environment and a lanky faceless stalker for company. The goal is to collect eight pages while avoiding the Slender Man, who grows progressively more determined with each passing note. Seeing the well-dressed night terror will cause static to form on the screen, and if you can’t get away, your character will eventually pass out, prompting a game over. The Slender Man, for his part, simply cannot be defeated. As such, there’s this constant feeling that the act of collecting all the pages is just a pointless attempt to delay the inevitable.

#16: The Sorrow

“Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater” (2004)

Hideo Kojima is no stranger to unique boss battles, but "Snake Eater's" encounter with The Sorrow stands alongside the weirdest of all time. While in Tselinoyarsk, Snake ends up diving into a spiritual river, where he comes across the Sorrow and the spirits of all the people the character (and player) has previously killed. The only way to move forward in the game is for Snake to literally die, be it by drowning or reaching the end of the river, and then take the revival pill. Sometimes the only way forward in a video game is through death.

#15: Jetstream Sam

“Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance” (2013)

As the second boss battle in the campaign, Jetstream Sam gives Raiden a rude awakening. After the opening scene which sees Raiden take down the Gundam-sized Metal Gear RAY, Raiden is challenged to a duel by the arrogant Jetstream Sam. What follows is an absolute beatdown where Sam makes quick work of our protagonist while barely breaking a sweat. This results in Raiden losing an eye and an arm. It’s the perfect cold shower to ensure nobody gets ahead of themselves and it can only end one way.

#14: Dragon God

“Demon’s Souls” (2009)

In the "SoulsBorne" games, dying is inevitable. This is taken a step further in "Demon's Souls," as the only way to progress out of the tutorial area is to taste death. More often than not, the tutorial boss, Vanguard, is the one that sends the Slayer of Demons to the Nexus; however, if the tutorial boss is somehow defeated, the victor is rewarded with some useful items and an early encounter with The Dragon God. Unlike Vanguard, however, The Dragon God cannot be defeated at this stage of the game, as the boss kills the protagonist in a cutscene.

#13: Kusabi

“Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly” (2003)

Armed with a camera, Mio traverses the Lost Village while looking for her twin sibling and trying to stave off a plethora of tortured spirits. While the Camera Obscura is Kryptonite to most spirits, it does nothing against the Kusabi when Mio first encounters it. The spirit of a folklorist who was sacrificed, the Kusabi is nightmare-inducing and Mio's sudden defenselessness makes this boss chase one of the most intense in an already consistently terrifying game.

#12: T. rex

“Dino Crisis” (1999)

Regina is going to need a bigger dinosaur to take down this beast. In Capcom's "Dino Crisis," a team of special agents have to fend off various types of time-traveling dinosaurs, with the T.Rex being by far the meanest creature in the first game. Across various chase sequences, Regina is left with little choice but to run away while occasionally peppering the T.Rex with a few shots to temporarily slow it down. While not extremely difficult to avoid, the T.Rex is aggressive and hits like a building coated with razor-sharp teeth. Naturally, any mistakes can result in a quick death.

#11: The Kaernk

“Amnesia: The Dark Descent” (2010)

This aquatic monster is invisible, and can only be seen and heard by the splashes it makes. Fortunately, this creature can’t get you if you’re out of the water. In the first part of this encounter, you stand on boxes as you try to navigate the rooms, solving puzzles, rushing from one safe place to the next. It’s tense, but doable. In the next section, however, you must sprint through submerged halls with nothing to stand on, closing doors behind you as you race to the end of the hall before the creature catches up. There is no fighting this terrifying foe; only caution and speed will allow you to survive this encounter.

#10: SA-X (just S.A.X.)

“Metroid Fusion” (2002)

Running into a foe that looks exactly like you is sure to send some chills. SA-X is a parasite that mimics Samus in every way, and has all her power ups. This creature is essentially unstoppable for most of the game, and as it hunts you down, your only option is to constantly flee. If it finds you, SA-X will kill you in one or two shots. Once you get the Plasma Beam, however, Samus can finally put the hurt back on this creepy parasitic copy-cat. This boss has a great intro; you get to see it enter an area Samus was in just moments ago, where it scans the space before leaving. It’s a great bit of foreshadowing for your eventual encounter.

#9: Urizen

“Devil May Cry 5” (2019)

The first boss that Nero fights, this is meant as a prologue to the rest of the game. But while you are eventually able to defeat this monster, it is basically impossible to do so now; the game intends for you to be defeated in this encounter and face Urizen later on. However, there is a possibility of beating him the first time, and the developers even planned for this nigh-impossible event. If you defeat Urizen in the prologue, you get a secret ending in which you’ve essentially just solved all the game’s problems right away. It makes for a well-deserved victory, if a tad anti-climactic.

#8: Seath the Scaleless

“Dark Souls” (2011)

Betrayer of the dragons and Gwyn’s faithful Duke, this enigmatic boss is impossible to defeat in your first encounter with him; as soon as you enter his crystalline chamber, he breathes even more crystals upon you. This is just as well, as you are meant to be defeated and locked up elsewhere within the Duke’s Archive, and ultimately face him again. Seath’s design is interesting; a pure white, scaleless dragon with strange tentacle legs, he cannot move when you initially meet him. You will realize later that Seath is essentially immortal until you destroy an object deeper within his lair, which is where the real fight takes place.

#7: Genichiro Ashina

“Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice” (2019)

The first real boss of this game, developed by FromSoftware, is one you’ll become quickly acquainted with. Genichiro Ashina serves as Sekiro’s nemesis throughout much of the story, and you’ll face him three times before the end. Unfortunately, in the first encounter, there is no option but defeat, as Genichiro will end the duel when he cuts off your arm. It is actually possible, though difficult, to beat Genichiro here; however, Sekiro will still ultimately lose the encounter and his arm in a cutscene. Take comfort in the fact that you’ll get to kick his butt twice in the future.

#6: T-00 Pronunciation: T-zero zero

“Resident Evil 2” (2019)

Mr. X is here to give it to ya. Chasing you down throughout the game, this mysterious, fedora-wearing monstrosity is quite the formidable foe. For much of the game, he is downright unstoppable, and so whenever he shows up your only option is to flee. It is terrifying to see him suddenly show up, seemingly out of nowhere, but walking purposefully in your direction. It doesn’t matter what you were doing in that moment, running is your only hope. With a simple yet sleek design, and the power to pummel you into the ground, Mr. X is one video game monster you do not want to cross paths with. Mr. X was so good, Capcom revisited the concept with Nemesis in “Resident Evil 3.”

#5: Khotun Khan

“Ghost of Tsushima” (2020)

Sometimes defeat is the only way forward. After Tsushima's samurai fall in battle against an army of Mongolian invaders, the protagonist, Jin Sakai, attempts to take on the enemies' leader, Khotun Khan. It does not go well. Regardless of whether the player puts up a good fight or not, the result is the same - Khotun gives Jin a convincing loss and throws the samurai off a bridge. This humiliation drives Jin to expand on his fighting skills, so it is a crucial plot point that must play out. Still, it’s fun to get a few good hits on Khotun before triggering the cutscene.

#4: Zeus

“God of War II” (2007)

The Ruler of Olympus doesn’t play fair. In the opening of the game, Zeus steals Kratos’ powers, his godhood, and his life. You are able to play out this first battle with Zeus, but it only has one outcome; your death, and your subsequent banishment to the Underworld. Thankfully, you’re later able to travel back in time to revisit this moment and defeat Zeus in a fair fight. What makes Zeus such a memorable boss is that players are given a real reason to hate him; the embarrassment you suffer in the first fight will make the eventual rematch all the more satisfying.

#3: Darth Vader

“Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order” (2019)

You are no match for the power of the dark side. Despite all of Cal Kestis’ training, upgrades, and victories throughout the game, the final challenge is an impossible one; your only option is to run from the Dark Lord of the Sith. And yet, nothing about this encounter feels disappointing. It is awesome to watch Darth Vader cut through his minion and fling away Cere as if she were nothing. This is an impossible boss fight done right, as it successfully drives home just how awe-inspiringly powerful this classic villain is. Gamers don’t feel cheated that they can’t beat him; they know, just by reputation, that they wouldn’t stand a chance against Darth Vader.

#2: Pyramid Head

“Silent Hill 2” (2001)

This terrifying creature won’t quit; it just keeps coming at you, an unstoppable juggernaut. A physical manifestation of the protagonist’s guilt and shame, Pyramid Head is a classic video game monster. And no matter what you do, it’ll kill you. What makes Pyramid Head so intriguing is the mystery surrounding it, its distinct look, and the absolute terror it instills in the player when it renders you utterly helpless. As you discover throughout the game, however, you brought this monster upon yourself. So really, Pyramid Head only gets even more disturbing the more you learn about it. Its grotesque walk, while slowly dragging its huge weapon behind, is the stuff of nightmares.

#1: The Xenomorph

“Alien: Isolation” (2014)

Thank goodness no one can hear you scream in space, because that’s all you’ll be doing when facing this creature. While eventually you are able to defeat and stop these foes, for the majority of the game you are hunted by them, and there is nothing you can do but hide. It is the most intense game of hide and seek ever, as the Xenomorph can appear at almost any time to sniff you out. If you are caught, you are treated to one of many creative death cutscenes. Your only option is to hide, hold your breath, and pray.