Most unintentionally creepy NPCs in video games

You’ll never look at friendly NPCs the same way again.

creepy kid viking in Assassin's Creed Valhalla

The Internet has no shortage of lists depicting the creepiest enemies you can find in video games. Yeah, the Pyramid Head is very scary, but what about NPCs that, due to glitches or wacky design, become just as monstrous as the most intentionally scary monsters in gaming?

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Sure, we already covered the creepiest glitches in video games. But for those who need even more cursed content, here’s a list just for you.

Kids in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla

‌In previous Assassin’s Creed games, Ubisoft generally modeled regular-looking kids. But in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, the company managed to come up with a bunch of monstrosities when it came to portraying Viking children.

Did the devs have a huge bone to pick with Scandinavians? At best, these NPCs only look okay. Most look extremely scary.

And that’s not even the glitch. That’s the feature. The glitch is one that makes these kids grow as large as adults.

Babies in Bioshock Infinite

‌Eerie children have been a staple of horror movies for the longest time, so it’s no surprise that video games would eventually follow that trend. Granted, the world of Bioshock Infinite is weird. But it never gets worse than when you look at some of its babies.

‌What the hell is that? Why does the game have some normal babies in it, and then some have the bodies of children but the heads and faces of adult men? Is this a side effect of taking plasmids during pregnancy? That could’ve made for such a great side plot.

The super-human drone controller in The Division 2

Upon release, the drone controller NPC in The Division 2 was just something else. She was just too good, like, impossibly good. Please see if you notice anything strange about her mannerisms in the clip above. Imagine being a poor criminal or rebel and knowing that’s what you’re up against.

‌I’m not keen on drone warfare in real life, so I actually enjoy Ubisoft’s accidental attempt at making it look gross and weird in games.

The mannequins in Skyrim are straight out of a horror movie

‌If you look closely at the mannequins in Skyrim, you might notice that they look back at you. In fact, they never stop following you with their unseeing eyes.

That’s because those goddamn mannequins aren’t objects, they’re secret NPCs. Sometimes you gotta make some shortcuts when you’re developing a game, but some shortcuts will do more harm than good. This is not one of those cases, because I absolutely love these cursed monstrosities.

The soldiers’ wives in Medal Of Honor Warfighter

‌Remember Medal Of Honor? That series met its demise after the launch of Medal Of Honor Warfighter, a big-budget game that came out in 2012 with NPCs that look straight out of the early 00’s.

The male models don’t look great, but they have one thing going for them: short hair. Their wives, on the other hand, have both really weird faces and hair animations. Also, how old are they? They manage to look both 30 and 60 at the same time.

The cutscene looks like an attempt to make one of those creepy AI-made deepfakes long before that was a thing.

Stalker Watson in Sherlock Holmes Nemesis

Watson in Sherlock Holmes Nemesis is always following players around, and teleporting behind their backs when they let him out of sight. It’s a good thing that this man loves Holmes. Otherwise, there’d be serious cause for concern.

This odd feature grew into such a classic that the devs behind the vastly superior Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments made an in-engine short film starring Sherlock Holmes’ creepiest friend.

Red Dead Redemption 2’s Bald Man

‌The Bald Man is a weird NPC that has appeared for many Red Dead Redemption 2 players seemingly just to haunt them. Nobody knows why he’s there or how he showed up. He’s become the Slenderman of the RDR2 community.

The only thing we know about the Bald Man is that sometimes he’s floating, and sometimes he shows up in a see-through manner, just like a ghost. I don’t really know anything about him, as nobody does, but I recommend that you don’t engage with him in a shootout. We know how well shooting supernatural entities turned out for John Marston.

This poor man from Assassin’s Creed Unity who is is immune to hanging

Assassin’s Creed Unity caught a lot of heat upon release due to the presence of a variety of obvious glitches, but I believe that more discrete glitches make for better horror.

What you see above is not an NPC that you’ll learn later was faking his death. That’s supposedly a very hanged, very dead, man. Still, a weird glitch forced him to be conscious and hilariously nonplussed about the fact that his neck was broken.

I just find it very interesting that the Assassin’s Creed series, one that I’m assuming is made by people who know a lot about death, don’t always manage to kill their NPCs dead.

About The Author
Tiago Manuel
Tiago is a freelancer who used to write about video games, cults, and video game cults. He now writes for Destructoid in an attempt to find himself on the winning side when the robot uprising comes.
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