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The Top 7... longest videogame endings

2 – Dragon Quest VIII

Running time: Somewhere in the 45-50 minute range, not including credits

Super condensed version: Plucky, colorful cast kills bad guy. Princess is set to marry a prince, but the hero runs off with her instead. Sweet!

After the 100-hour quest to save the world from certain doom, this relatively straightforward tale comes to an end. Instead of a typical ending, we get an entire sub plot involving Princess Medea and her arranged marriage to another prince. After all the time spent with Medea, you’ve developed a personal connection with her and you’re starting to think… hey, what if I just butt in and take her away from all this royalty nonsense, and we live off the land in a very romantic but highly illogical existence?

Well, that’s what happens. Yes, you do actually take control for certain parts of this ending, so while we said earlier that doesn’t count, DQVIII is an exception because you’re literally playing an ending, not walking in between cutscenes. This isn’t some extra quest or final-final boss battle, it’s a user-controlled denouement that closes out the story with a true fairy tale finish. A magical game brought to a heartwarming end.


1 – Metal Gear Solid IV: Guns of the Patriots

Running time: Damn near an hour

Super condensed version: Solid Snake finally kills Liquid Ocelot, decides not to kill himself after reconciling with his clone-brother-father Big Boss. Meryl gets married, Raiden starts a family… hell, it’s all wrapped up pretty nice.

Like there was any doubt what would be number one. This is a franchise that drops 20 minute cutscenes like they’re last year’s iPod, so naturally the ending for the “final” game in the series is going to test your endurance. However, unlike most other entries in this list, MGS4 does a fantastic job of actually using all 55-ish minutes to great effect, neatly tying up a tapestry of loose threads with happy endings all around.

Oh sure, not every single question is answered, but you definitely feel closure, and not some hackneyed “guess we’d better make an ending” bullshit. It’s a thorough final act to an insanely intricate (and oftentimes nonsensical) story that spans 23 years, 10 platforms and nearly 30 million units sold worldwide.


B-B-B-Bonus entry!

Remember Gex? That poorly conceived, shamelessly transparent attempt to out-attitude Sonic the Hedgehog? His first game inexplicably has a 20 MINUTE secret ending if you find all the doodads and whatsits scattered around the place. Oh, it’s boring as shit, consisting mostly of slowly scrolling quotes from the development team (who apparently like Monty Python) and then a ton of concept art. Who, on this planet, wants minutes (and minutes) of never-before-seen Gex art? If it’s you, then you probably drew it.

Jan 25, 2010


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Topics

Top 7

40 comments

  • 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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