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Fun or Foe?


No matter what their motivations are, enemies in video games are here to stay, and whether or not killing them is getting a little bit out of hand, there are always those enemies that you just love to come back to and kill, maim or murder again and again and again.

Beating them can be cathartic, satisfying or just ridiculously funny, but whatever the reason, we'll replay entire games just to do it again. Please join me as I have at look at some of my favourite foes and just why it is that I love defeating them.

Metal Gear Solid 3 – The Guards

Metal Gear Solid 3 is jam packed with some of the greatest and most inventive boss fights in video game history. I could probably bang on about how great they are for hours, but I'm not going to do that. Instead I'm going to focus on the enemy that is with you all the time, constantly dogging your every step and waiting for you to put a foot out of line. I'm talking about the regular guards.

For the first time in the series, there is no radar to see where they are. There are no vision cones to show you if they can see you, and navigating around them can be tricky, time-consuming and tense, especially if you happen to not see one coming towards you because of their camouflage. Sneaking around them is immensely satisfying, but occasionally you might want to get a bit more inventive when encountering them.

You can shoot them if you're boring, or you could stun them, tranquilise them, break their necks, slit their throats, plant mines in their path or C4 on their backs, lure them into an ambush, set them on fire, drops hornet's nests on them or even make them give you food by threatening them. You can even blow up their ammo supplies, so they can't properly engage you in a firefight, or their food supplies, so they can constantly complain about being hungry. That's for kicking me out of my cardboard box, you jerks!

Tekken 3 – Gun Jack

Whilst not strictly an enemy, Gun Jack is definitely one of my most preferred opponents. He's isn't difficult to beat and I don't hate the character or anything like that. Nope, the reason I love fighting against him is because of the noise you make when you hit him.

You see, most of the other characters are humans, or are at least living creatures. Gun Jack is a robot. A slow, lumbering robot that makes the most satisfying clanking noise in the whole world when you smack him in the face, or more accurately, when you smack him several times in a row with Hwoarang's or Eddy Gordo's easy-to-do (some would say 'cheap') spinning kicks.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker – Moblins

Moblins are a fairly standard enemy in Zelda games, but I've never enjoyed fighting them more than when I've fought them in Wind Waker. Because of the art style, they ooze personality, whether they're marching up to you proudly or when they leap in shock and clutch their bottoms after you stab them from behind. They yell in confusion when you use the grappling hook to steal their possessions and they get pissy if you knock their weapons out of their hands.

Fighting them is just really fun. The combat system is incredibly fluid; it gives you a surprising number of possibilities without ever making it too easy, and there are plenty of opportunities to just fight waves and waves of them.

Timesplitters – Zombies

Timesplitters wasn't the first game to use zombies and it certainly won't be the last, but it was one of the first games I played where killing them in waves and waves was fun instead of terrifying. It was definitely the first game where I punched a zombie's head off with my bare hands, but if you're more of a traditionalist, there's always a double barrelled shotgun, a baseball bat or a house brick.

The most satisfying part however, is the noise they make as their heads fly off. It's kind of like a snapping noise, which doesn't sound anything like the sound a real head would make if it was knocked off, not that I would know…

Mass Effect – Husks

Husks are the kind of enemy that get into huge groups and try to swarm you and your squad in various narrow locations. If they are successful in doing that, you are pretty much screwed. Husks are what happen if you impale human corpses onto 10 foot high alien spikes and wait for a while for them to become evil zombie robots.

They are on this list because I, well…It sounds quite childish, but when you use any of the biotic attacks, such as Charge, Shockwave or Nova, you can shoot huge groups of them flying off in all directions, and I just find this immensely funny. There's just something inherently hilarious about Lifting a husk, watching it float along aimlessly for a few seconds, wondering what it possibly did when it was alive to warrant this, when suddenly it's get hit by Throw as well, and the combination of the two attacks send it flying into the stratosphere.

What about you?

Is there a particular enemy that brightens your day after you've defeated them? Or do you have an enemy you actively avoid?
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About FoolproofAdamone of us since 5:31 AM on 12.03.2013

You could follow me on Twitter but I don't say much.
I am an author at Kotaku and I'm also on Youtube and Tumblr.

Currently Playing:

Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow

Games Completed - 2014

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
Tropico 4: Modern Times
Rayman: Legends
X-Men Origins: Wolverine
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages

Games Completed - 2013 (45):

Batman: Arkham City*
Hitman: Absolution
Hitman: Blood Money
Spec Ops: The Line
Thomas Was Alone
Metal Gear Solid 2*
Metal Gear Solid 3*
Mark of the Ninja
Metal Gear Solid 4*
Sleeping Dogs
Bioshock: Infinite
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword*
The Legend of Zelda: Minish Cap*
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time*
Super Mario Galaxy
Dead Island
Halo: Reach
Hotline: Miami
Tomb Raider
Professor Layton and the Spectre's Call
Sniper Elite V2
Grand Theft Auto V
Assassin's Creed 3
Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon
Dead Space 3
Joe Danger 2: The Movie
Professor Layton and Pandora's Box
Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3
The Walking Dead: 400 Days
Bioshock: Infinite - Burial at Sea Episode 1
Resident Evil 6
Mirror's Edge
Tropico 4
The Last of Us
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions
Rayman: Origins
The Stanley Parable (Source)
Professor Layton and the Unwound Future
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
Super Mario 3D Land

*Not for the first time