10 Video Game Characters Who Had To Die To Win

Just because you win the game doesn't mean you get to live.

Shadow Of The Colossus
Team ICO

Most video games follow a simple structure: In the beginning, you are eased into the mechanics as you solve basic puzzles and defeat simple enemies.

The game will have a progressive difficulty curve, so by the time you reach the final level, every obstacle thrown your way will force you to combine everything in order to win. Most titles take about 20-30 hours to complete, but others can be up to 80 hours, so when you defeat the final boss, it's so satisfying to finally see the credits roll as your character walks off into the sunset.

But there are some games which do not end in celebration.

Instead, they conclude with a gut punch. After enduring every hardship, slaying every enemy and cracking every puzzle, some titles conclude with your character biting the dust. Obviously, this can be pretty devastating.

Sometimes however, it can make the ending better if the protagonist's demise serves a higher purpose. The fact that players get angry when the main hero dies can be a good thing, as it shows they truly cared about them all along.

Before I continue, it goes without saying that this list contains ALL of the spoilers.

10. Assassin's Creed 3 - Desmond Miles

Shadow Of The Colossus

The protagonist of the Assassin's Creed series is a bartender called Desmond Miles. When Abstergo Industries learns he is the descendant of The Assassin Order, they ask him to test out The Animus; a machine which lets the wearer relive their ancestors' memories.

At first, Miles doesn't realise the company is run by The Knights Templar; the sworn enemies of the assassins. The organisation wishes to use the memories of Miles' ancestors to locate technology created by the ancient race, The Isu.

One piece of tech which The Templar desire is The Pedestal; an artefact that can see and alter time. One of The Pedestal's prophecies show that solar flares will blanket the earth in 2012, decimating most of humanity. If Miles places his hand on the artefact, reality will switch to a timeline where the solar flares don't occur. However, the energy of The Pedestal will kill Miles.

Miles knows The Pedestal is in a location where the solar flares can't reach him, meaning he would survive the cataclysm. Refusing to let billions of innocent people die, Miles places his hand on The Pedestal, sacrificing his life to save the world.


James Egan has written 80 books including 1000 Facts about Superheroes Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about Horror Movies Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about The Greatest Films Ever Made Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about Video Games Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about TV Shows Vol. 1-3 Twitter - @jameswzegan85