The Top 7... longest videogame endings

4 – Eternal Sonata

Running time: 44 minutes

Super condensed version: “Can human beings, who create waves of ugly desire, ever become like the sea water that’s stirred by the beauty of the moon?”

WHAT. That’s the only appropriate response to Sonata’s preachy ending that’s longer than an episode of LOST. The whole game takes place in a fever dream/deathbed hallucination of real-world composer Chopin, which sounds so effed up we couldn’t wait to see how out-there the end would be. When the whole thing ends with a melodramatic, faux-philosophical whimper, you can’t help but feel ripped off.

However, the usually dry, unemotional dialog that permeates games like this is replaced with the aforementioned psychobabble. Some of the best quotes play over the credits, which is why we include them in the total running time – they’re so incomprehensibly convoluted they take on a life of their own, and become a genuinely entertaining part of the show.

Above: SHUT 

3 – Xenosaga III: Also sprach Zarathustra

Running time: About 45 minutes without credits

Super condensed version: Heroes stop the bad guy from dicking up the world, then some of the wordier protagonists stay behind to sacrifice themselv… hey, wait a sec – haven’t we seen this ending before?

The Wiki synopsis for Xenosaga III is nearly 3,000 words, so that should give you an indication of how brain-meltingly mundane the ending must be. Every concept, conversation and thought is given 17 lines of expository dialog to get the point across, when any competent writer could say the same damn thing in four. Plus the usual melodrama, ‘90s era voice acting and head-scratchingly vague message.

But, what do you expect from a series that was slashed from six games to three? When developer Monolith was finishing up Xenosaga II in 2004, it assumed it would have four more games to tell this tale – instead, it’s all mashed together and packed into one final installment. Despite an admittedly imaginative universe and some admirably lofty goals, it all amounts to an ending that, while longer than most, is just as plodding as every other so-so JRPG.


Top 7


  • gamewriter - August 19, 2010 4:13 a.m.

    You need to add Zelda Twilight.......literlay 5 min
  • TheWebSwinger - January 30, 2010 12:08 a.m.

    Well well well! GR having something kind to say about Metal Gear Solid? That warms my heart.
  • teke367 - January 28, 2010 9:11 p.m.

    I know it wasn't a game, but the last Lord of the Rings movie should be in every list involving notoriously long endings. Seriously, that movie went on for about an hour after I thought it finished. But Metal Gear Solid 4, I kept waiting to go to the bathroom, until about 30 minutes in, I said "eff it" turned the volume way up and ran for it.
  • Ravenbom - January 27, 2010 7:31 p.m.

    lol, the first part of the article made me think that it wouldn't be an all JRPG article, but considering MGS4 is the only one that couldn't be considered a JRPG, you maybe should have just made this: "Top 7 Longest JRPG Endings" You should have just gone for it, it would have been funnier if this was just about how long JRPG endings are. Also, as far as the Final Fantasy series goes, I remember FF8 having the longest ending, but I could be mistaken.
  • SausageLozenge - January 27, 2010 12:17 p.m.

    Got to love the JRPGs.
  • FreekinIdiot - January 27, 2010 12:13 p.m.

    An hour for Metal Gear Solid endning? Wot? How achingly boring and pretentious
  • AuthorityFigure - January 27, 2010 11:55 a.m.

    Man, this list of games made me feel pretty ignorant! But Gex 3D was not such a bad game (was it?!)...
  • VenomVip7 - January 26, 2010 12:38 p.m.

    Nice guys nice...though it would be interesting to see a Top 7 longest credits or something...First Assassin's Creed would definetly be in that one.. Keep up the good work!
  • Cwf2008 - January 26, 2010 4:31 a.m.

    Wait wait if this isn't about JRPGs, then why the hell is almost every game on this list a JRPG?
  • GameManiac - January 26, 2010 3:22 a.m.

    To whoever is playing the mentioned games in this list: grab the popcorn and the adult diapers (unless it can be paused in some manner). How BIG of a game is MGS4????
  • Slash258 - January 26, 2010 2:51 a.m.

    Glad to see my favorite PS2 game, Dragon Quest VIII, made it to the list. I thought of it right away as soon as I read the title of the article.
  • tobacco - January 26, 2010 2:11 a.m.

    The Gex secret ending... ..."You are so big." Uh. Thanks?
  • michaelmcc827 - January 26, 2010 1:28 a.m.

    I'll be honest, this was a pretty lame top 7...whatever though, gotta make it work every week I guess.
  • Dolan88fan - January 26, 2010 1:10 a.m.

    mgs3 was my least favorite of he series id have to say my favorite was metal gear one but redone for the gamecube so it had better graphics they should redo it now for ps3 to give that master piece every little detail it deserves
  • CH3BURASHKA - January 26, 2010 12:55 a.m.

    Surprisingly, all from Japanese developers, and mostly RPGs. Huh. Also, C-C-C-C-Chemo Breaker!
  • sleepy92ismypsn - January 26, 2010 12:43 a.m.

    what a coincidence i just beat mgs4 last nite
  • robotechandnarutosucks - January 26, 2010 12:03 a.m.

    this article fails.
  • spacemonkey086 - January 25, 2010 10:48 p.m.

    I loved MGS1 and 2. But I hated MGS4. The story was way too over the top. A mech with nuclear weapons i can believe, but a vampire and all that nanomachine bull shit was stupid. The ending was cool to see big boss. But there were so many cheezy lines, like when otacon is crying and merryl proposes in the middle of a gunfight. I respect Kojima for inventing stealth games, and I like what he's done in the past. But I think he lost it on this game. If you want to play a decent game that blends movies and action, try Uncharted 2.
  • Cyberninja - January 25, 2010 10:37 p.m.

    interesting i am not watching any of those endings dont have enough time
  • lovinmyps3 - January 25, 2010 10:32 p.m.

    Ahh so that's why Brett was asking me about MGS IV.

Showing 1-20 of 40 comments

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