The Top 10 Video Game Levels from Hell
Video games thrive on challenge. Whether it's having deadly aim, brutal ninja skills, or the ability to wave around a wand and look like a complete tool, games demand skills, precision, and accuracy. Sometimes they also demand the patience and reflexes of a ninja on caffeine pills.
Source: Darren Robb/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images
By Dan Seitz
10. Impossible Game Lives Up To The Title
We here at Spike.com love the Impossible Game, because it's basically both everything awesome and everything that makes you homicidal about platforming in one package. It's pretty straightforward: jump the spikes, hop on the blocks, and keep going.
What makes it just a little difficult is, well, see for yourself:
It's enough to cripple any thirteen-year-old with carpal tunnel, low self-esteem, or controller-destroying rage. And isn't that what indie gaming is really all about?
9. Battletoads' Hover Bikes From Hell
There are many achievements from old-school video games that'll impress any gamer. Beating Contra without the Konami Code. Defeating M. Bison twice in a row. But there's only one that they'll refuse to believe you've pulled off, and that's beating Battletoads. Why?
That's why. The hoverbike level is infamous for demanding both skills and total luck to survive. And Battletoads is esteemed far and wide as the hardest game you can find before you get into games designed to destroy your soul. Like...
8. Ninja Gaiden's Final Level Can Only Be Beaten by a Ninja
The Ninja Gaiden franchise is pretty famous for being insanely difficult these days. In fact, the developer gives anybody who picks the "Ninja Dog" (i.e. "Easy") mode add-ons like pretty little ribbons for your ninja.
But Ninja Gaiden's been murderous right from the start. Here's the final boss fight:
That looks terrible, right?
Did we mention that if you lose this fight, you go all the way back to the beginning of the level? And have to fight through the whole thing? Just to get back to that boss fight?
7. But Even a Ninja will Have Trouble With the Ninja Turtles
The Hudson Dam area, in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the NES, starts off pretty simply. Side-scroll, kill the enemies, jump over holes, etc. But then you start swimming.
How does a two-minute time limit sound? How about a two-minute time limit to swim through a maze? Not hard enough? How about you have to find and disable a bunch of bombs in out of the way places? Still not hard enough? How about electric gates? Still not hard enough?
How about narrow windy passages lined with a space barely big enough for your character with electric tentacles hanging from the floor and ceiling ready to shock you if you deviate from so much as a pixel from the proper path. That sound tough enough?
See for yourself:
6. Double Dragon's Cave Will Throw You in the Hole
Source: Taito Corporation
Double Dragon, for those of you still zygotes when it came out, was the first huge beat 'em up. It had two-player action, what were clearly a gay Japanese man's idea of dangerous street thugs, and a stunning twist ending that nobody expected, partially because it made absolutely no sense whatsoever. Namely, that player two was the bad guy you'd been fighting all this time to confront.
But before you could find that out, you had to get through this:
That's the cave level. You know, we got dragged to tons of caves in grade school, and none of them ever featured moving platforms or falling spikes. Just another failure of the American education system in making learning fun: not only would razor-sharp falling objects be more interactive, but we'd have burned off all that weight we gained doing nothing but trying to beat Double Dragon.