Our Gaming Editor Marc takes a look at problematic game endings, and what can be done to fix them.
Ubisoft doesn't know how to do an ending. The Splinter Cells back in the day all had like 10 second endings. They even retconned out one of the ending choices in Double Agent. Prince of Persia reboot ended in a cliffhanger and its DLC ended in another cliffhanger that still hasn't been resolved. Far Cry 2 had a terrible text ending with stills. FC3 was barely better yet has some of the longest credits I've ever seen. Assassin's Creed has been left hanging forever. Even Ezio's fate is left to a seperate downloadable animated "movie"
the first Prince of Persia on ps2 had a beautiful ending though.
that is true ubisoft just suck at endings princ of persia 2008 may never get a sequel yet it ended on a downright cliffhanger, and then they releases dlc with another cliffhanger, and now they refuse to make a sequel to clean it up splinter cell games have the most irrelevant endings ever every assassians creed end on a cliffhanger or a mindfuck, like seriously what was AC3 ending it sucked latly it seems to me that the only developers that can make good or decent endings are suckerpunch, naughtydog, sony santa monica, rockstar,rocksteady, even capcom makes better endings.
Assassin's creed just went too ridiculous for the setting. It just came of as if it was ripped from a b movie. They just needed to tone things down which is why AC:B had the best ending. It was really about space gods and sun but about the characters there that shocked us all. I personally do not mind cliff hanger after cliff hanger as long as they answer things in the mean time (AC series just didn't do that)
Some things you don't need to have your hand held and told what happens, give your brain a chance to create something.
Not everyone has an imagination, or they'd rather youtube it for "clarification." then later whine because it's not how "they" thought it would be.
Sorry but an ending is an important factor. If they're not going to bother making an effort to end the story perhaps they shouldn't bother telling one to begin with.
I'm with Listenkids on this one. I think the developers are (I my honest opinion) simply overestimating the audiences ability to use their imagine and let their mind run with it. Like with the Price of Persia game, sure it's a cliff hanger but it left a STATEMENT and you are left to finish the story in your mind. It's imagination that really brings a story alive. Perhaps people haven't grasped that yet. Far Cry 2's ending also left a statement, but could have been executed better.
Ok, go back a few years to the SNES/Genesis era. There was very little in the way of story in most games, you maybe had a flashy intro loosely showing what the f*ck was going on. So you go about completeing the game, there are no lengthy cut-scenes anywhere or plot updates throughout the game. It then ended with the good guys celebrating/aliens blowing up/crime lords flying out of the window. < That was ALL the closure you needed. There was no real story so the ending wasn't really anticipated. Flip to current generation, MGS4 would be a good example. Its all about the story, we MUST know what happens to Snake. Kojima spends hours in game telling a story, tieing up loose ends but more importantly it gives closure with a sh!tload of dialogue after the final punch has been thrown. You cut back to MGS4, and cut the story at the point where Snake and Liquid fight and just roll the credits back to the title screen. I'm sorry but no ones imagination other than Kojima is ever going to give you closure in cases like that. Some games don't need an ending I agree, but they shouldn't build up a story spanning over weeks of gameplay only to have some scrolling text, its just a weak assed end to what was previously an engaging storyline.
@caseh, Very well stated, but there are some difference here. First, Metal gear solid IS a story. I've always felt like the story came first, and then the gameplay. So yes, you must know what happens but if you think back, you really don't. At the end of Metal Gear you find out Snake will live, but that's the end of it. You don't know where he goes or what he does. Same for AC. You know he rescues the woman at the expense of the world, but you don't really know what happens after. In both cases the character overcomes the major obstacles, but you're still left to imagine the outcomes. In either case, these are extreme cases. In the original Gears of War, you really had very little idea of what was really happening, and the story was VERY loose, and you really had no idea what the character does at the end, but that was ok because it was a game first, and then a story.
@dirthurts The only "statement" the PoP cliffhanger left is BUY OUR DLC FOR TEH TRUE ENDING. What good is your imagination then??? Nothing. Because Ubi' went and dragged it out for $10 more that left the game in a worse spot than where it was. Then ditched the continuity anyways. Decompression is a form of storytelling often frowned upon by comic book readers who hate buying issues where nothing happens or things get needlessly stretched out. The fact that they saved Ezio's death for a $5-10 PSN/XBL animated skit is a slap in the face to everyone who paid $60 a year for 3 years, only to find out if they wanted the true ending they shoulda bought the cartoon and not the game, or spent more $$$ on a Collectors Edition. What's there to grasp or imagine there? If you're like me and chose to save Lambert's life in Ubi's Splinter Cell Double Agent ending, Splinter Cell Conviction still says you shot him (!) and thus finished the game with an out of continuity ending. No foresight. Much how Sam Fisher has been getting younger and more agile in subsequent games to the point they ditched Michael Ironside as VA. The only thing these developers are overestimating their own ability to tell a story with continuity.
Good God...that's a ridiculous cop-out. There is a difference between making a cryptic ending and making an unsatisfying ending. I'm sorry, but if a game is NARRATIVE DRIVEN throughout the first 99% of it's play-time, there needs to be at least SOME effort put into the ending. I don't need all the answers, but I do need to feel like developers didn't pass off the ending to some office interns because they were sick of working on it. ...that means NO GODDAMN MONTAGE. Jesus. Developers spend the entire game telling their stories through animated cutscenes and gameplay, and yet they can't find a more creative way to wrap up their game than a Reading Rainbow-inspired montage!?
Firstly, a down bubble vote for the bad language. You should communicate yourself with better chosen words or no one will ever take you seriously. Secondly, what game are you referring to? Your comments have little substance without being specific. There are few games that I have played that I haven't felt satisfied with the ending. I actually quite like the Price of Persia ending. The Assassins Creed games have all had mediocre endings, but I never felt like the story work was that great either (although a great concept), so that was expected. Above I cited (AC for assassins creed, I actually meant prince of persia).
...I'm sorry that my language offended you (though the language was not even directed at you). Just FYI, you may wish to avoid 90% of the games we're talking about here if you are so readily offended by salty language. Let me just go down my Steam games list here, and keep in mind that this is not a comprehensive list in the least. These are only the narrative-driven games with terrible endings that I own through Steam: - Bioshock 1/2 (montages) - Borderlands 1/2 (like a minute of cheesy "we won" dialog, cut to credits) - Deus Ex HR (arbitrary choices, montage) - Dishonored (montage) - Fear 1/2/3 (ALL basically "setup" endings) - Fallout 3/NV (montages) - RAGE (30 second cutscene...no real confrontation at all, just a button press) - Warhammer 40k DOW2/Space Marine ("setup" endings) The list goes on and on and on to the point that it almost seems like an inside joke in the industry to totally skimp on the ending. Granted many of those games are some of my favorite games ever, but that just makes me sadder knowing how awesome the endings could have been if they had put as much work into them as they did the rest of the game.
You're playing too much COD.
Still waiting for a game, open worldish with a good story, you can ride a dragon, jump off for combat, about an evil man who kidnaps your daughter,girlfriend etc. A good story can make a game, a bad one can break it, no matter how good in other ways said game is.
FYI GTA IV had a pretty good story. Open world games don't need good stories anyway tbh as they are about freedom. Linear games DO need good stories as they are about a story. It says alot how bad story telling is when an open world game like GTA IV has better story than most linear games.
Maybe because we don't like the game to end ? NO.. I think because they are working so hard but at the end they just want to finish it quick.
Red dead redemption has the best ending in video game history Imo
God I forgot to mention that one in my list of good game endings. I will go back and add it.
Nice to see you care alot about the article :D I will rate your site up!
@sandmano I can't reply directly for some reason but thanks a lot.
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