Movies, TV, and comic books aren’t the only mediums where gratuitous amounts of carnage are paraded around as entertainment; that same thirst for blood is readily showcased in video games.
Take a moment to think back on some of the best video games of all time. How many of them contain copious amounts of violence? For every colorful, family-friendly Legend of Zelda and Sonic title on the market, there are twice as many grim and gory games. Mortal Kombat has been around for decades, and the franchise celebrates limb-ripping and face-eating like they’re national pastimes. Similarly, the God of War series puts players in the sandals of a power-hungry Spartan who maims absolutely anything he can get his hands on.
The most brutal video game scenes make playtime feel more uncomfortable than fun. That's not to say that people shouldn't play through especially excessive titles; some of the most violent video game scenes take place right in the middle of otherwise wondrous experiences. However, when the player is given the option to check out an x-ray view of their victim's mutilated body, one has to wonder: how much is too much?
Poseidon's Death In 'God of War 3'
Effortlessly maintaining the franchise's reputation as one of the most violent video game series of all time, God of War 3 features a multitude of brutal moments. The game begins with Kratos scaling the cliffs of Mount Olympus with plans to exact his revenge on the gods that did him dirty.
Of all the Olypmians Kratos slays, his massacre of Poseidon is perhaps the most brutal. As Kratos approaches his fallen adversary, the player is thrown into the perspective of Poseidon, so that they can witness the Olympian's death from a first-person perspective. This means the player feels every impact as Kratos headbutts the god of the sea's skull open, then gouges his eyes out. To say it’s a gory, disturbing affair would be a massive understatement.
Oh, right after Poseidon dies, the cycle of tides on Earth is thrown into disarray, which causes mass-flooding all across the world. By killing Poseidon, Kratos inadvertently causes the deaths of basically everyone on Earth.
The Beheading Of Caroline In 'Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus'
If you haven’t played through Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus yet, you should know that the game is stuffed to the brim with moments of sickening violence. Whereas in the first game, protagonist BJ Blaskowitz carries a combat knife for close-quarters encounters, the sequel sees him upgrade to a hatchet to maximize Nazi dismemberment. On top of that, the game begins by making the player shoot their beloved family pet, and doesn't let up until the triumphant, blood-drenched finale.
Of all the moments of extreme violence depicted in the game, Caroline's beheading stands above the rest in terms of gratuity. Blaskowitz wakes up in captivity to find that Caroline — his fearless leader — has been stripped of her power armor. The moment the player spots an armor-clad Nazi dragging a massive ax, they know things are about to turn bad.
The scene culminates with the Nazi leader beheading Caroline, then shoving her severed head directly into Blaskowitz's (and thus the player's) face. In most instances, the game graciously allows the player to look away from scenes of intense violence, but this one is rather inescapable.
If you've ever wanted to take back America from a group of Neo-Nazis in an "alternate history" scenario, you should probably go pick up Wolfenstein II.
'God of War: Ascension's' Gorgon Executions
God of War: Ascension flips the script on traditional video game sexualization by slapping massive breasts on disgusting snake creatures. To sweeten the pot, the player is tasked with dismembering these monsters in the most gratuitous way possible.
In an execution so morbid it could only ever exist in ancient Greece, Kratos takes pleasure in carving open the bodies of gorgons, then stabbing through their heads. This final stab splits the gorgons' skulls (revealing brains, muscles, and other organs), before continuing downward to sever one of their breasts. Have you ever wanted to see a lopped-off boob drizzled in blood from a snake monster’s brains? If the answer is yes, well, you're in luck.
'Sniper Elite's' X-Ray Testicle Explosions
If you think that slow-motion, x-ray executions sound grisly, just wait until you see how Sniper Elite applies that formula to the task of exploding people's testicles. The game is a cavalcade of testicular fireworks, which are further highlighted by the anatomically accurate x-rays of the victims. The player regularly takes aim at enemies' nether regions, then watches as their chances of having children burst to pieces right between their legs.