The Top 7... Badass beheadings

5. A Million Little Pieces

The game: No More Heroes 2

Another series filled with notable decapitations, No More Heroes has plenty that are spectacular enough to rival Mortal Kombat’s most gruesome efforts. In No More Heroes 2 alone, lightsaber-detached heads fly from damn near every enemy that crosses antihero Travis Touchdown’s path. One guy even has his head cut off and reattached, before yanking it back off himself in a grinning act of defiance.

If you’re looking for sheer, satisfying nastiness, however – and we are – there’s no death more awesome than the one suffered by Million Gunman. Part of this is because he’s an incredible bastard. Not only is his stage a pain in the ass to navigate, thanks to temp-heroine Shinobu’s horribly implemented jumping, but he’s a patronizing old dick who’s disgusted at having to fight a girl and uses “Fuck you!” as a battle cry. Even if he wasn’t such a charmer, though, it’d still be pretty cool to see him die like this:

You have to give the old bastard credit: It’s not many people who could, after being separated from their bodies, maintain the cool composure necessary for a calm “Yes, sir!” before being cut to ribbons. That Million Gunman pulls it off before having what’s left of his identity smash-chopped into flying gibs is kind of breathtaking, even in the context of a videogame.

4. Dr. Salvador’s Surgery

The game: Resident Evil 4

The rest of these entries are restricted to beheadings that are made badass largely by the fact that you, the player, are dishing them out. But this one is so unforgettable, so perfectly horrifying, that it just wouldn’t be right to exclude it.

Above: It’s also the only one to be immortalized in a game’s official art 

We’re talking, of course, about what happens if you allow the chainsaw-wielding, bag-headed Dr. Salvador to get too close to you. When Resident Evil 4 came out in early 2005, game baddies with chainsaws were nothing new. So the first time we saw Sal, we figured he’d just deal out some damage while Leon – at full health – unloaded a pistol point-blank in his face. We sure as hell weren’t expecting this:


Sure, there were plenty of other decapitations in the game, frequently delivered by creatures that were arguably even scarier than Dr. Salvador. But you never forget your first, especially not when it’s this humiliating and grotesque.


The game: Brutal Legend

<spoiler>Hey guys, guess what? At the end of Brutal Legend, the bad guy dies.</spoiler> We know, we know – you totally weren’t expecting that to ever happen.

Above: Aw, we thought this lovable mug was going to stick around forever 

But now that we’ve revealed that small chunk of the ending, we can get into how he dies: with the most metal execution in videogame history. After Emperor Doviculus louses up the game’s final battle with giant chicken-legged things and his own personal interference, he retreats to a cave to… hang from some chains. After doing his best to make the preceding fight miserable, it turns out Doviculus isn’t so tough one-on-one – and after he’s been beaten to a pulp, hero Eddie Riggs can finally give him what he deserves:

Swiping clean through his neck with a huge battleaxe just isn’t enough. Mirroring the end of the game’s first big boss fight, Eddie makes it stick by screaming one word in Jack Black’s signature wail – and it’s that that makes Doviculus’s head shoot straight up, spray gore everywhere and ruin all the carpets. That the whole ridiculous spectacle is in slow motion only makes it that much more gratifying.


Top 7


  • Mezolitik - September 20, 2011 4:49 a.m.

    That Salvador one was horrifying. I remember being totally stunned when I first saw it. The one in the special mode (I can't remember its name; 'kill lots of enemies 'til the time runs out') was infinitely worse though; he was bigger and he could run, IIRC. Also, for sheer hilarious violence, what about the Power Fist decapitation in Fallout 3? Veronica, in particular, literally punches raiders' heads off.
  • CoppertopJohnson - February 19, 2011 9:52 p.m.

    I've always been very partial to Mortal Kombat, myself. Good stuff, Mikel.
  • Zeb364 - February 17, 2011 10:33 p.m.

    And THAT is why Duke is the man.
  • oryandymackie - February 16, 2011 12:29 p.m.

    I remember being beheaded by Dr. Salvador. I dropped my controller and sat, for about five minutes, open-mouthed, before turning off the PS2.
  • philipshaw - February 15, 2011 4:21 p.m.

    This is the best top 7 of this year, great job Mikel
  • AntistasMetroid - February 15, 2011 4:21 p.m.

    Mr.Reparaz, your features never cease to amaze. Hit me up for some dracler huntin' some time...
  • The_Tingler - February 15, 2011 1:55 p.m.

    Could you guys remove the Sponsor Ads that last twice as long as the clips? Thank you.
  • jmcgrotty - February 15, 2011 1:18 p.m.

    How do people keep dying to Salvador. By no means am I world class player, bit he's never killed me.
  • snothammer - February 15, 2011 9:56 a.m.

    Dr. Salvador's decapitation made failing in RE4 so goddamn satisfying. I don't think I've ever been so pleased to die in a videogame. My former boss has that official art poster, and it makes me jealous.
  • JBizFoShiz - February 15, 2011 8:57 a.m.

    Does nobody else think of Sunny Delight when Helios says "Feel the power *of the sun*!" I must have ripped his head off 7 or 8 times last year, and always loved the tearing of flesh and subtle product placement for orange drink.
  • Lionzest7 - February 15, 2011 6:19 a.m.

    Guess all the heads popping off in Ninja Gaiden 2 were not noted? lol
  • Genericpenisjoketista - February 15, 2011 6:17 a.m.

    I was hoping to see Brutal Legend's decapitation at #1, but after watching the two that placed higher than it... I can see why they did. This was an excellent article and I enjoyed reading every last bit of it. Especially the reasoning behind why Duke was at #1. "Because something very bad happens, and it involves an ass." Stay awesome, Mikel.
  • DangerZone723 - February 15, 2011 3:14 a.m.

    Brutal Legend should have been at least #2. I haven't laughed that hard at a game in... well, forever.
  • keltar93 - February 15, 2011 2:44 a.m.

    Once again, GamesRadar finds a far-fetched excuse to attach a great Top 7 to a special event. I fully expect the DECAPITAAAAYYYYYSSHUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUN!!!(perfectly qouted, fetalspray) to become a TalkRadar sound effect
  • theintellectual - February 15, 2011 2:26 a.m.

    nothing to fight the valentines day blues like watching somebody get their heads violently torn off.
  • Yeager1122 - February 15, 2011 1:44 a.m.

    Truely what valentines day is all about ripping peoples heads off.
  • Bitmun - February 15, 2011 1:16 a.m.

    Obligatory; what about this little number from Bayonetta? Nothing like ripping off the head of a god, especially since he's been a massive prick to you throughout the entire first quarter of the game. Still, good list, very fun read. The videos were nice.
  • 510BrotherPanda - February 15, 2011 1:09 a.m.

    Thanks Mikel; the Brutal Legend and Duke ones cheered my lonely self right up!
  • Japanaman - February 15, 2011 12:57 a.m.

    What? No mention of Reptile's fatality from MKII where he pulls your head off with his tongue. That HAS to be the best beheading ever!
  • Strangleme - February 15, 2011 12:51 a.m.

    GODDAMN this Top 7 is EXCELLENT!! I Love you mikel!! Happy Vagintines Day!!!

Showing 1-20 of 39 comments

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