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Top Plot Twists in Videogames

Top Plot Twists in Videogames

There have been many games over the years that have given us a surprise twist in the narrative. To some, a twist is mandatory for a great story, while to others it has become something of a cliche. Whatever your opinions, a good twist can make or break a story's narrative focus and direction. To that end, I have decided to create this list of the top plot twists in videogames. By this, I mean a twist that has a major impact on the story, rather than something you could just consider an afterthought.

Fallout 4

In Bethesda Softworks’ Fallout 4 you witness the last few moments of your happy family life before the bombs drop. As the world begins to end, you and your family rush towards the local Vault to seek shelter. Upon entering Vault 111 you are told to enter a pod for decontamination. This pod, in reality, is meant to cryofreeze the host as an experiment for the Vault-Tec Corporation. You look over and see your spouse enter their pod with Shaun (your baby boy). The pod activates and you are frozen for an undisclosed amount of time. When it next begins to thaw, you see a team of scientists in hazmat suits, and a strange man trying to force Shaun from your spouse's arms. As they refuse to give up their child they are shot, and the baby taken. You are then frozen once again. More time passes before the cryopod releases you. As this is an RPG (role-playing game) you then have the freedom to pursue your own agenda, though the story wants you to seek out your missing child.

As you explore the wasteland of the Boston Commonwealth, you come across many factions and hear about the mysterious Institute. A shadowy group that possesses advanced technology, and can create synthetic lifeforms indistinguishable from humans. Their goals are unknown, but their actions, including abducting and replacing innocent men and women with synths seem nefarious. As you complete more of the main quest it is eventually revealed to you that Shaun is not only an old man by this time but now the leader of the Institute faction, the same group that abducted him as a child and killed one of his parents. This revelation has a major impact on the story of Fallout 4, as depending on your choices you may already be on a collision course to destroy the Institute and kill the son you have been searching for.

Fallout 4

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Bioware’s 2003 RPG Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic has the player create a character and choose a class at the beginning much like any RPG. Over the course of the game, you discover that your character is force sensitive, and has forged a bond with a Jedi known as Bastila. Together they begin receiving visions pointing them toward the locations of artefacts across the galaxy. Places in which the defeated former Dark Lord of the Sith, Darth Revan, and his apprentice Darth Malak visited. It is the belief of the Jedi Council that these artefacts will yield the secret to defeating Darth Malak and the Sith Armada that is devastating the Republic. Curiously, you also have flashes of Bastila’s assault and victory over Darth Revan in the events before the game. As you progress throughout the main story you eventually come face to face with Darth Malak, the current Dark Lord of the Sith. He cannot believe you are still alive and reveals to you that you are in fact the person formerly known as Darth Revan. When Bastila and a group of Jedi boarded Revan’s ship intending to kill him. Darth Malak fired on his master's vessel hoping to (as all Sith do) succeed his master. Darth Revan was badly injured but still alive. Rather than killing a wounded and defenceless enemy, Bastila brought him before the Jedi Council who used the force to suppress his memories. The player now faced with the knowledge of their character's past has some choices to make, and some answers to give their companions. To most of the galaxy, Darth Revan is a traitor to the Republic, and a mass murderer at this point.


Resident Evil Village

Capcom has done a great job with the last two entries to the Resident Evil franchise, and while the twist for this one occurs in Resident Evil Village we will need to talk about Resident Evil 7 as well.

Taking place in a Louisiana bayou, Resident Evil 7 introduces us to the new character of Ethan Winters. Unlike Chris Redfield or Leon Kennedy, Ethan is a pretty average guy with no tactical background. He is just trying to find his girlfriend Mia, whom he has tracked to the Baker residence. Upon getting there he finds Mia, though she is hardly acting normal. Over the next few minutes, she goes from delirious, to what seems like a possessed state. Eventually, she impales Ethan’s left hand with a screwdriver before cutting it off with a chainsaw. As Ethan desperately tries to leave this freak show of a house he is attacked by Jack Baker, who knocks him to the floor before stomping on his head causing extreme brain damage. When Ethan next wakes he is strapped to a chair in the Baker’s dining room, his left hand somehow reattached. As the game progresses Ethan learns that in order for Mia and Zoe (his helpful contact in the Baker family) to escape this hell hole they are going to need to be free of the Mold bio-weapon that has infected them. So Ethan begins working to collect ingredients in order to form a cure. In the end, he only has enough serum to give to Mia as the second vial was needed to stop Jack Baker from killing everyone.

Now we fast forward to the events of Resident Evil Village, throughout the game poor Ethan has his right hand sliced clean off by the charming Lady Dimitrescu and her razor-like claws. For Ethan, this seems to not be a big deal. He collects his severed hand and after escaping Lady Dimitrescu, simply puts it back in place and pours some herbal remedies onto it — good as new. The strange thing about this is he expects it to work and it does. As if deep down he knew the twist before it was revealed to him. As the game continues, Lady Dimitrescu fully impales Ethan through the stomach with her claws. Once again he is fine. Near the end of the game, the main antagonist Miranda actually pulls out Ethan's heart and crushes it in front of him, for a while that does seem to kill him. However, it is now time for the truth, Ethan was infected by the Mold way back in Resident Evil 7 when he died, this occurred when Jack Baker stomped on his head at the beginning of the game. He was able to leave the bayou without taking the cure as Mia did, because Eveline was killed at the conclusion of that game. Ever since those events his body has been infected, providing him the power to recover from all those injuries.

Resident Evil 7 and 8

Dead Space

In 2008 Visceral Games brought us Dead Space, one of the scariest games ever made. The story goes that the USG Ishimaru, a ship designed to crack open planets for the purpose of resource harvesting, has stopped responding. The USG Kellion is sent to investigate what has happened; among the rescue team is Isaac Clarke, a systems engineer who has a personal interest in the safety of the Ishimaru. His girlfriend Nicole is currently stationed onboard as a senior medical officer. Upon reaching the Ishimaru the team discovers many of its systems are damaged, it takes only a few seconds before the team is attacked and separated by necromorphs. As Isaac moves throughout the ship he discovers video logs from various crew members including his girlfriend. Hoping beyond hope that she is still alive, eventually they find each other; Nicole shows up on the other side of a divide. Isaac and she talk for a moment before she tells him to get the key to the mining deck; as she works to open a door to allow him to proceed, Isaac defends her from a distance. Later when one of Isaac’s team members (Kendra Daniels) reveals herself to be a traitor, taking the only shuttle to the surface with the intention of stranding Isaac on the Ishimaru; Nicole and Isaac again work together to recall the shuttle. This time she and Isaac are in the same room, so close they could touch. They board the recalled shuttle together and make their way after Kendra. Now for the twist, Kendra reveals to Isaac that Nicole is dead, and has been for a long time now. Isaac has been slowly going insane, suffering from the dementia-like effects caused by the Red Marker, the same artefact that has caused the necromorph contagion.

Dead Space


Back in 2007 a little company called 2K Games brought us BioShock, it was a major success and is still a great time should you give it a go today. In BioShock you take on the role of a man known simply as Jack; while en route to London from San Francisco aboard a transatlantic flight, your plane goes down. Jack is the only survivor. Fortunately, he sees a structure nearby and swims towards it, thus Jack gains entry to the underwater city known as Rapture. This city of wonders, created by Andrew Ryan, was meant to be a utopia for the enlightened, where science could reign free from political, social, and religious constraints. Marvels such as gene splicing and plasmids became commonplace amongst the population that could afford them. However, the city would soon begin to tear itself apart. Rapture's fall from grace started with Andrews Ryan’s rival Frank Fontaine; this man had control over the city’s smuggling ring as well as a large portion of the ADAM production — the substance fueling addiction throughout the population. Eventually, Andrew Ryan had Frank Fontaine killed, but things did not end there. The civil unrest continued, and soon rights and freedoms were curbed to try and maintain order. Rapture’s downfall was one of revolt and bloodshed.

By the time Jack enters the city it is a mess, with gangs and factions of addicts and gene-spliced psychos running amok. However, Jack soon finds an ally on his quest to escape the city. A man named Atlas makes contact with him and guides Jack through Rapture and its many dangers. The phrase “would you kindly” becomes something of a recurring line with Atlas as he asks you to do things, the idea being that these objectives will benefit both of you. As the game is linear in its design you follow your objectives like a good little boy. Unfortunately, Atlas turns out not to be Atlas at all, but rather Frank Fontaine who survived Andrew Ryan's attempt to have him killed. The phrase “would you kindly” is a subliminal message that has been conditioned into Jack so that he will obey. By the time you discover this, Atlas has had you kill Andrew Ryan, who in turn is revealed to be your father. A revelation regarding the plane is also made clear, in which you remember it did not crash, you in fact hijacked it after reading a note with your instructions which contained the words “would you kindly”. The note was attached to a gift box with a loaded pistol inside.


Wow, that was a rollercoaster, wasn't it? I hope you enjoyed looking back through these games at some of the best plot twists in videogame history. If there is a title you think deserves a place on this list give us a shout in the comment section.

Jase Taylor

Jase Taylor

Staff Writer

Explaining things thoroughly and also too much

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Stephen Garrett
Stephen Garrett - 07:28pm, 14th April 2023

Bioshock should be on TV or film ????