Boss fights are often some of the most memorable encounters in video games, where players take on powerful foes and do battle against the story’s main villains. Sometimes boss fights are epic in scale and importance, leaving a lasting impact on players once they’ve finally managed to conquer them.
Other times, boss fights can be downright weird. Some bosses are weird because of their appearance, and other boss fights are weird because of the method in which players defeat them. In any case, the video game world has had no shortage of weird boss fights over the years, with these 10 standing out as the weirdest to date.
When it comes to video game bosses, Giygas, the final boss in EarthBound, is as weird as he is frightening. Giygas is an alien entity whose form can’t be properly comprehended by humans. Giygas’ horrific appearance in an otherwise family-friendly game is enough to make the fight against him one of the weirdest boss battles in gaming history, but the way players defeat him makes the encounter even stranger. Unlike bosses in most other JRPGs, players can’t simply hit Giygas with attacks, but rather, they have to pray to the people of Earth to drain him of his cosmic energy.
Hitler (Wolfenstein 3D)
Plenty of video games have allowed players to go toe to toe with Nazis, but few have actually let them face Adolf Hitler himself. Fewer still have let players face off against Hitler piloting a mech suit with chainguns. Wolfenstein 3D‘s final battle sees hero BJ Blazkowicz square off against the Nazi leader in a memorable, bizarre showdown that ends with Hitler crying out to his lover Eva Braun in his death throes.
Mom (The Binding of Isaac)
Almost every boss in The Binding of Isaac could be considered “weird,” but the weirdest, most disturbing boss fight in the entire game is against Isaac’s own mother. Known simply as Mom in the game, she tries to stomp on Isaac with her high heels and disgusting, pulsating legs made of discolored flesh.
Other fleshy substances, presumably more pieces of Mom, can spawn enemies during the fight, and she also has a tendency to stare at Isaac by sticking her eyeball through one of the four doors in the boss room. To describe the boss fight with Mom as “weird” would be an understatement, to say the least.
Psycho Mantis (Metal Gear Solid)
Psycho Mantis is a powerful psychic, and one of FOXHOUND’s deadliest members. The boss fight against him is weird for a number of reasons, perhaps most notably, his ability to break the fourth wall. In both the PlayStation and GameCube versions of Metal Gear Solid, Psycho Mantis comments on game saves players have on their memory cards, and also messes with players’ minds by making their controllers rumble and by making it seem as though they changed the channel on their TV. The way players defeat Psycho Mantis is weird as well, requiring them to put their controller in the second port so that he can’t read Solid Snake’s mind in the game.
Rabbid Kong (Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle)
Rabbids are weird. Combining Super Mario with Rabbids and throwing in XCOM-style gameplay is a weird idea. And so it follows that such a project, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, would have its fair share of weird boss battles.
Perhaps the weirdest boss fight comes in the form of Rabbid Kong, who is a massive Rabbid with mannerisms and attire similar to Donkey Kong. After defeating Rabbid Kong, he falls to his doom, and is subjected to taking a selfie with a Rabbid dressed as Princess Peach.
Slot Machine (Star Fox)
Hidden in the “Out of This Dimension” level in the original Star Fox is a boss fight against an intergalactic slot machine. This massive slot machine can only be defeated by getting three red 7’s, with other slot combinations yielding other results, like projectiles and enemies for players to deal with. Considering the popularity of this weird encounter, one has to wonder if the upcoming Star Fox 2 on the SNES Classic Edition will have a weird boss fight of its own that pays homage to the Slot Machine battle.
The Great Mighty Poo (Conker’s Bad Fur Day)
A list of weird video game bosses wouldn’t be complete without an appearance by The Great Mighty Poo from Conker’s Bad Fur Day. The Great Mighty Poo is a massive pile of poo that Conker encounters while exploring the fittingly named Poo Mountain. If fighting against sentient feces wasn’t weird enough, the developers at Rare decided to make The Great Mighty Poo an opera singer that loves sweet corn and is weak against toilet paper.
The Sorrow (Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater)
The second Metal Gear Solid boss fight on this list, Naked Snake’s encounter with The Sorrow in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is not only weird, but also depressing. The Sorrow forces Snake to wade through a seemingly endless river filled with the spirits of everyone players have killed during the game up to that point. As far as boss fights go, the battle against The Sorrow is truly unlike anything else in gaming.
Vicus (Clive Barker’s Jericho)
The twisted mind of horror author Clive Barker gave the world monstrosities like the Cenobites from Hellraiser, and so it’s not surprising that the video game he worked on, Clive Barker’s Jericho, is full of grotesque creatures. Arguably the weirdest battle in the game is against Vicus, a hellish representation of the deadly sin gluttony, who is suspended from the ceiling by chains. Vicus’s disturbing appearance makes the boss fight plenty weird by itself, but his method of attack is the oddest thing about him. In order to hurt the titular Jericho squad, Vicus pulls open his own fat stomach, raining thick streams of blood down upon them.
Vortex Queen (Ecco the Dolphin)
Everything about Ecco the Dolphin, a game about a time-traveling bottlenose dolphin, is weird. Its final boss fight is one of the weirdest things about the whole game, though, as it sees Ecco do battle against the massive Vortex Queen. This disturbing beast is the leader of the aliens that have come to steal Earth’s water, and the climactic showdown stands out as one of the weirdest boss fights in gaming history.
Besides the weird boss fights listed here, there are others that are worth mentioning as well. The boss fight against The End in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, where players can win simply by letting him die of old age, comes to mind, as does the hilariously anticlimactic fight against Bob the Killer Goldfish in Earthworm Jim.
Out of all the weird video game boss fights, which do you think is the weirdest? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.