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8 games with disastrously botched rescue missions

Generally, the first rule when it comes to rescuing hostages is ‘don’t let everybody get horribly done in.’ But sadly, this proves too much of a stumbling block for many game heroes. Be it accidentally killing geriatrics with a killer virus or letting the damsel in distress get crushed by a cow, the following rescue missions all get botched. Spectacularly.


Operation ‘Watch all your
friends get gunned down'

Failing to rescue anyone in: Far Cry 2

The mission

After various acts of terrorism, murder and theft, all committed in the name of returning peace to an area of war-torn Africa (natch), your gun for hire faces a moral conundrum. Save a bunch of their murderous mercenary buddies in a bar, surrounded by hostiles. Or, rescue a church full of innocent, doe-eyed villagers from the same dastards. Naturally, most of us black-hearted souls always choose the former.


Above: We suggest saving the kids over the mercs if you’ve yet to play
Far Cry 2

Where it goes wrong

Strategically, trying to save your buddies from 20 guys toting AK47s by taking cover inside Mike’s Bar (a pub with wafer-thin walls) isn’t the best plan. As a result, the bar gets surrounded, hails of gunfire fly in through every window and the rescuees die from an overdose of… eh, too many bullets to the face. Pity, if we’d just gone to church we could have actually saved the kids and God wouldn’t now hate us.

How the day could have been saved

Hiding with your merc mates in the depths of the African jungle in the first image below (situated a convenient minute’s stroll in every direction from Mike’s Bar) seems to be a more viable escape plan, especially when the alternative was holing up in a death-trap/dilapidated pub. Hindsight’s a wonderful thing when you’re facing death at the hands of pissed-off military insurgents.

Where we should have hidden

Where we actually hid


Operation ‘This rescue attempt is
so shitty we should have just
killed the hostages ourselves’

Failing to rescue anyone in: Resident Evil

The mission

After a bunch of people bite the big one on the outskirts of Racoon City, Special Forces unit S.T.A.R.S. send their Bravo team to investigate a mansion situated in the heart of murder central. But soon they go missing and the unit’s Alpha team is sent out to find and save their work chums.


Above: S.T.A.R.S. (Shit. Totally. Abject. Rescue. Squad.)

Where it goes wrong

Letting every single Bravo member (bar one) get either eaten, nibbled on or swallowed probably wasn’t on the mission briefing. So botched is Alpha team's rescue attempt that one of their own members gets eaten by zombie dogs within seconds of stepping out of the rescue chopper. Even worse, best boss ever, Albert Wesker, leader of Alpha, is partially responsible for the whole undead outbreak and even murders Bravo’s squad leader.

How the day could have been saved

If S.T.A.R.S. had entrusted the rescue operation to a bunch of schizophrenic mental patients. Seriously, no one’s batting average could be worse than Alpha’s bumbling idiots. And, if they controlled the urge to shiv everyone in sight, we’d bet our readies the mentals would have saved a couple of folk… or bits of them, anyway.

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54 comments

  • DarkMatter032 - July 30, 2009 2:36 p.m.

    Earthworm Jim!!! FTW!!!
  • foxhound - July 30, 2009 2:40 p.m.

    just send in those 4 lunatics from shi no numa in world at war for every rescue mission theres not many problems for nutters and an magic ox full of guns cant solve
  • nadrewod999 - July 30, 2009 2:44 p.m.

    WHERE IS CALL OF DUTY 4??????????? Am I the ONLY ONE WHO REMEMBERS how a SQUAD of TRAINED (wasn't it the British form of Marine?) couldn't shoot a GUY'S PISTOL out of his hand when the guy IS THEIR ONLY LEAD and is threatening TO FREAKING COMMIT SUICIDE? And if that wasn't enough, his suicide directly caused the launching of ICBM with NUCLEAR WARHEADS, WITH THEIR TARGET BEING THE ENTIRE FREAKING EAST COAST of the FREAKING US OF FREAKING A! If that wasn't qualified enough to make the list, but a random exploding bathysphere was, SOMEONE HERE NEEDS TO RELEARN what "HOSTAGE SITUATION" REALLY FUCKING MEANS! P.S. Yes, I know that Caps means Yelling. Capthca: threat; deborah
  • nadrewod999 - July 30, 2009 2:47 p.m.

    Sorry, I meant "Disastrously botched hostage situation". After all, the bathysphere might just be a case of a guy who really likes fireworks and getting what he wants in any way possible. Capthca: Cornell juice
  • TRAVthe3RD - July 30, 2009 3:03 p.m.

    lol i totally rejected the african villagers to save my buds :P Captcha: not first :(
  • killerwhalen - July 30, 2009 3:32 p.m.

    Lol, "I steal from my church collection plate!", great stuff. recaptcha: karen behaving
  • The_Tingler - July 30, 2009 3:33 p.m.

    I don't think the Bioshock ones actually exist in the game, do they? Isn't it all a ruse to make you sympathise with Atlas?
  • AMayer - July 30, 2009 5:45 p.m.

    This article gave me gas.
  • monojono - July 30, 2009 6:14 p.m.

    @nadrewod999 This article is about people attempting to rescue hostages and failing. A prisoner managing to kill himself doesnt really fit the bill. Think before your next rant. p.s In real life, shooting guns out of peoples hands doesnt work.
  • boxmeizter - July 30, 2009 6:16 p.m.

    shouldn't it be some spoiler alert thing in the start of the text? thanks alot GR for fu**ing up bioshock for me
  • CombatCat120 - July 30, 2009 7:40 p.m.

    Dammit,GR. I was planning to play Bioshock. There's no reason for that anymore, I guess since u completely ruined the whole game for me.But gr8 article anyway.LOLED at the Resident Evil mission
  • Selectedpayload - July 30, 2009 8:20 p.m.

    how about the survivors on Dead Rising. Particularly the achievement for having 8 people and/or 8 females to follow you. The survivor AI is poor so it almost always goes down the pan.
  • mertor3190 - July 30, 2009 9:05 p.m.

    Rescue missions never really work out well. Its what makes them entertaining
  • gutlessVADER - July 30, 2009 9:37 p.m.

    dude i found this hilarious (28th)
  • Sidnapolis - July 30, 2009 9:59 p.m.

    I think you guys made a minor error. I believe it was Alpha team that went in after Bravo in RE1, not the other way around.
  • phoenix_wings - July 30, 2009 10:44 p.m.

    Yeah, I don't know if this was added in after...but...for those of you bitching that GR ruined games for you? There's a SPOILER ALERT at the beginning of the article. What about in RE 4? The call back to the president..."Uhhm...yeah, Mr. President? Yeah, hey it's Leon. Uhm...I've got some bad news, and promise that you won't be mad, but Ashley won't be coming home. See they tied her up, and there were these guys all around her--and gee, who would have thought that a shot to the pinky finger would have killed her? Not mad, are ya?"
  • linkganon - July 30, 2009 11:07 p.m.

    all metal gear solid people know that the foxdie virus is inside of snake, but you notice otacon is completely immune to it somehow, also raiden somehow doesn't get infected. is it because it targets specific people or what? i never understood that. how does any guard survive after making contact with snake and finally meryl survives contact with him? all in all, good article.
  • Yeager1122 - July 30, 2009 11:26 p.m.

    So the wife and kid actually existed in Bioshock? I thought they were made up by Atlas.
  • ciderdrinker - July 30, 2009 11:36 p.m.

    Not really sure that Bioshock and Metal Gear Solid should really count. @ phoenix_wings very nice - made me chuckle. @ linkganon yes, the foxdie virus was supposed to only target specific people - It was also supposed to kill Snake but backfired and killed Liquid instead.
  • Amnesiac - July 31, 2009 1:49 a.m.

    @boxmeizter: um, there IS a spoiler warning on the first page.

Showing 1-20 of 54 comments

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