- Video games with simplistic art styles often feature creative and exaggerated death animations that can be both funny and guilt-inducing for players.
- Games like Silver Falls: Ghoul Busters, Super Meat Boy, and Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, showcase brutal deaths in otherwise friendly-looking video games.
- These deaths can range from getting impaled on spikes, being blown to bits, getting incinerated, or even having their souls leave their bodies, adding an emotional impact to the player’s failures.
An element built into most video games is the inevitability of failure. Games require some element of challenge. Those challenges will have to be tackled many times over if one is to attain victory. That failure is presented usually in the form of the player’s character’s death, which is sometimes done so in a spectacularly brutal fashion.
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Games with a simplistic, cartoon art style are not normally the type to have particularly violent demises. Several of these take advantage of this art style to portray deaths in a creative, exaggerated fashion. They can be played for laughs, or they can make gamers feel guilty for their failures, pushing them to try again and do better so they do not have to wince at the latest animated deaths of their characters. As such, here are some of the most brutal deaths in otherwise friendly-looking video games.
7 Silver Falls: Ghoul Busters
Outdoor Adventures With Eldritch Horrors
Silver Falls: Ghoul Busters
Silver Falls: Ghoul Busters is from indie developer Sungrand Studios, which made six games for the Wii U and 3DS eShops in their final year. Ghoul Busters, a 3DS game ported to the Switch, is a throwback to the original Game Boy era of handheld games, with a monotone color palette and retro-inspired visuals.
While the game looks cheery, it is challenging. Monstrous creatures have invaded the forests of Silver Falls. These foes can cause some gruesome deaths, betrayed by the title’s visual aesthetic. Landing on a spike will turn one into a human kebab, with bits of retro gore flying. The outdoor setting also makes it a perfect title to play while on a camping trip.
6 Super Meat Boy
Splatter Into Minced Meat
Super Meat Boy
- Team Meat
- Team Meat
The Super Meat Boy games are known for their demanding platforming levels and tight controls. The titular character must run and jump through creative platforming challenges in order to rescue the woman he loves from a dastardly villain. This trope, of course, is dated by today’s standards.
Super Meat Boy will die and die again in a messy, splattering fashion, with hazards such as saw blades and needles waiting for the character to make one wrong jump. Also, the replay mode simultaneously plays all attempts, so the totality of one’s failures is on full display.
5 Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy
Burn To A Crisp, Become Flattened, Explode, And More!
Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy
The orange Bandicoot became synonymous with the original PlayStation when he starred in a trilogy of platformers and an excellent kart racer, all developed by Naughty Dog Studios. The games see Crash Bandicoot navigating linear 3D levels filled with enemies, pits, fruit, and explosive crates.
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When these hazards kill Crash, the death animations are something out of a Tex Avery cartoon. He gets squashed, stretched, blown to bits, incinerated, and electrocuted. These creative caricatures of death make failure almost as much of a reward as success. None of them are gory, but they are definitely painful.
4 Pikmin 3
Watch The Literal Souls Depart From Dead Pikmin
- Nintendo EAD
- Puzzle , Strategy
Pikmin 3 expanded the gameplay of the previous entries by allowing players to alternate control between the three explorers of planet PNF-404. It also adds two new Pikmin species, Rock Pikmin and Winged Pikmin. All the character designs are particularly adorable, and a variety of creatures populate the land.
The fact that these Pikmin are so cute makes their deaths difficult to watch. One boss creates a sandpit that traps the Pikmin as they fall into its mouth. What makes the loss of these Pikmin more heart-wrenching is that their souls leave their bodies as they perish. It is agonizing to see the cute creatures one cares for departing their corporeal bodies. Explorers will want to do what they can to minimize casualties.
3 Among Us
An Imposter Leaves Half A Body With A Bone As Evidence
- Party Game
Among Us is the social deduction game that the world needed to keep themselves entertained during lockdowns. It gave those in isolation a chance to interact as they repaired a spaceship together, or killed crew members, depending on the role assigned during each match.
The simple art design and the color-coded crew members in their full-body space suits are instantly recognizable. It becomes less cute, however, once the imposter stabs a crew member in the back, quite literally, and leaves a mutilated body by a vent. These deaths are presented in short, over-the-top animations that can be quite brutal. Crew members can then vote on whom they think the imposter is, launching the “winner” into the vacuum of space.
2 Dumb Ways To Die
Too Many Dumb Ways To Die To Count
Dumb Ways to Die
- Metro Trains Melbourne
- Metro Trains Melbourne
Dumb Ways To Die started as a viral animated video from Metro Trains to remind people to be safe at train stations. It soon spun off into a series of mobile games that throw WarioWare-type micro games at the player, in which failing means the characters die.
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Breath of the Wild has fun things to offer with the game’s immersive landscape. This makes dying in the game sometimes as interesting as succeeding.
Indeed, the little beans have a number of dumb ways to die, all hilarious and violent in equal measure. One bean may have his bottom half devoured by piranhas. Another will poke a bear, subsequently having their head bit off. The challenge is to collect all the beans that have met their end in the most outlandish ways.
Horrific Deaths Captured In Darkness
Limbo follows a boy lost in the woods. The moody, black-and-white art style and minimalist imagery create a spooky experience, where it looks like everything can and will kill him.
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Within the woods and outside it, everything really does want this innocent boy dead. He can find himself ensnared by a bear trap, or a giant spider leg can spear through his chest. A mysterious tribe of residents in this dark landscape also wants him dead, laying traps for him along the way. The gameplay ingeniously uses physics in its puzzles, so what goes up can also come down on him, and hard.
MORE: The Most Bizarre Death Animations In Gaming History