12 bosses with more bark than bite
Here comes the boom
Video games are brimming with hideous, formidable bosses, but its not very often that the most terrifying enemies take the least amount of effort to defeat. Whether by accident, for the sake of humor, or as an Easter egg, some seemingly imposing big bads can be taken down with the metaphorical flick of a finger.
These bosses dont show up on the reg, but when they do its hard not to remember them; their quick and easy defeats stand out like a sore thumb. As a tribute to these pitiable pushovers, this compilation highlights the 12 most notable bosses that may appear to be truly scary, but dont put up much of a fight. Feel free to put down your strategy guides--you won't need them for these goons.
Kracko (Kirby Series)
Kracko is a boss youve probably seen dozens of times, but may have never actually known its name. If youve faced this terrifying, spiked nebulousness before, then youve already seen most of his tricks: firing vicious lightning bolts, swirling around the screen at inhuman speeds, and worst of all, birthing minions known as waddle dees. When I first encountered Kracko in Kirbys Dreamland 2 as a kid, I knew I was in for some trouble. Or at least, I thought I was in for some trouble.
As it turns out, Krackos stormy ways are nothing to be afraid of. To defeat him, Kirby must simply gulp down the foe's continuously-spawning waddle dees and fire them back to inflict the necessary damage. It seems that Kracko never learns his lesson across different Kirby games, so once you memorize his weakness youll never be challenged by him again.
Del Lago (Resident Evil 4)
Resident Evil is no stranger to horrific, creepy bosses, but its hard not to place Resident Evil 4s Del Lago somewhere near the top of the fear chart. The spawn of a scientifically engineered mutant salamander, Del Lago has spent a considerable amount of time feasting on the disposed corpses that are dumped into the lake in which it resides. Its immense girth and ability to hide under water until it's ready to strike make Del Lago a seemingly dangerous beast. Clearly, it was eyeing Leon Kennedy as its next meal.
Even with its savage traits and track record, the oversized caudate can be put to rest with multiple spear-shots to the back--a relatively easy task for Leon, whose surprising knowledge about harpooning suggests he indulges in a bit of whaling during his off-time. Even incoming attacks can be countered by a handy spear; just toss one into Del Lagos mouth as he dives toward you and hell reel back into the depths from whence he came. Granted, this is Resident Evil 4's first boss encounter, so it makes sense that its not devastatingly tough. Even so, looks can be deceiving.
Lucien (Fable 2)
Lucien Fairfax is not a man to be meddled with. His wife and family were forcibly taken from him by fate, and as such his only goal in Fable II is to secure control of the legendary Tattered Spire, an artifact that can grant the user any wish he or she desires. It goes without saying that Lucien becomes increasingly depraved, desperate, and evil as he nears his ultimate goal: resurrecting his (surely-decayed-by-now) family.
Despite increasing mania that drives his anger and ferocity to new heights, Lucien is disposed of with a single bullet during the games climax. Even if the player opts not to pull the trigger, an NPC companion will instead, still defeating the evil foe with just one shot. Its highly amusing out of context, and frankly, quite chuckle-worthy while playing too. So much build-up, such little payoff.
Tentalus (The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword)
Tentalus is easily one of Skyward Sword's more menacing enemy creatures--he single-handedly destroys an entire dungeon just minutes after Link clears it. He's equipped with two massive, death-dealing tentacles and dozens of smaller ones, all of which can break through walls and floors, smash anything in their path, and constrict the life straight out of a victim. Sounds like Link's toughest challenge yet, right?
Not really. Newly armed with a MotionPlus-powered bow, Link's accuracy is almost scope-like, making a direct shot to Tentalus' oversized eye a piece of cake. From there, it's just a matter of waiting for the huge sea beast to temporarily collapse within striking range, and slashing the living daylights out of its peeper. It's a thrilling encounter mainly because of how frighteningly gargantuan the enemy is, but when it comes to difficulty, Link has dealt with far worse (the aforementioned motion controls, for example).
Golem Overlord (Chrono Trigger)
Bosses can only look so imposing in 2D, but Chrono Triggers Golem Overlord takes the cake as one of the most formidable in terms of appearance. Not only is he hulking in size, but he begins an ominous countdown for a super-charged attack early on, slowly building strength throughout the battle. Its unclear just how devastating this attack will be, but as the fight progresses, the tension builds. You can't help but wonder: What happens when the counter reaches zero? Erm, not much.
As it turns out, Golem Overlord is merely a vessel for Squares wry sense of humor, and the creature fails to attack your party even once throughout the encounter. Eventually its revealed that despite the mysterious countdown, Mr. Overlord is actually quite terrified of heights. Petrified by his fear, he simply stands there until Crono and friends slay him in his tracks. Its almost sad, really--poor fella never stood a chance.
Dino Pirahna (Super Mario Galaxy)
Say what you will about its intelligence, but Dino Pirahna's a little prodigy when it comes to being vicious. Think about it--given that you witness the beast hatch from its egg, its reasonable to conclude that this boss is essentially an infant. An infant. Please, please keep me away from this things parents.
Defeating young Dino is an easy task, requiring only that Mario boot the rounded bulb at the end of its tail until it gives up (and by gives up I mean explodes in a frothing, screaming fury). Though Dino Pirahna does return in a stronger form later, his initial form is so laughably wimpy that I almost feel bad for it.
Electrocutioner (Batman: Arkham Origins)
Electrocutioner is a formidable (if a bit lesser known) Batman antagonist, but his presence in Arkham Origins is downright sad. He walks into the arena like a true champ, with electricity oozing out of every pore, performing flashy jumps with threatening body language, signalling that Batman may be in for his first real boss battle up to that point in the game. Not so.
As scary as he looks, it's surprising just how weak he is. When I originally faced him, I spent a few moments just circling, wondering how best to approach the fight. Upon tentatively making the first move with a cape-swish and a kick, a slow-mo cutscene triggered, and that was it--guy was out cold just like that. The game adds insult to injury when minions flood into the arena and trample their former boss, at which point the whole thing becomes hilarious. And maybe a little pathetic.
Armogohma (Twilight Princess)
As youd expect from a colossal, poisonous arachnid, Armogohma is a disturbing sight to behold. Armed with deadly fangs, the ability to rapidly breed ravenous offspring (NOOOOOOPE), and a huge, pulsating eye in the center of her body, shes the sort of beast that would make most folks run for their lives before taking her on in battle. Of course, the fact that youre pretty much trapped throughout the encounter doesnt exactly help the situation.
However, once Link discovers a weakness or two of hers, the fight with Armogohma is essentially over before it begins. Victory is a simple matter of possessing nearby statues (via the Dominion Rod) and instructing them to smash Armogohma in the face, an attack she is apparently incapable of avoiding. By the time the creatures nasty eyeball begins helplessly hopping around the stage, youll already be laughing at how simple the whole encounter was. Just dont forget to deliver the final blow.
Metroid Hatcher (Metroid Prime 3)
The Metroid Hatcher is creepy, but so are all bosses in Metroid Prime; its a phenomenon that Samus has long since become accustomed to. Still, rarely does a Prime boss battle conclude so easily, and despite the Metroid Hatchers devious ability to, well, hatch Metroids, it can be dispatched with extremely simple tactics if you know what youre doing.
Actually, tactic is too generous of a term--you literally just shoot the Hatchers tentacle feet. Repeatedly. Does it look like hes winding up for an attack? Shoot the feet. How about preparing to unleash some baby Metroids? Feet. Spinning toward you in a devastating cyclone of doom? Feet, feet, and feet again. Its a pretty odd mechanism for slaying such a nasty creature, but after a good 7-10 minutes of foot-fire the Metroid Hatcher wont be giving you any more problems.
Pinwheel (Dark Souls)
Difficulty and Dark Souls go together like graham crackers and marshmallows, so it's obvious that the terrifying Pinwheel isnt exactly childs play. Best described as a flying, masked necromancer with three faces, the Pinwheel essentially teleports its way around you, spawning copies of itself to confuse and distract. Hardly the type of strategy youd associate with being a pushover.
Still, as long as youre not in the very early stages of the game, Pinwheel is extremely easy by Dark Souls standards. Running towards it early and attacking nonstop should be the only plan you need, and as long as you keep your eyes focused on the real Pinwheel and not the copies, it should only be a matter of time before it goes down. Its a shame that such a compelling visual design doesnt put up more of a fight.
Wracktail (Paper Mario)
The dragon god Wracktail is surprisingly ferocious for a Paper Mario villain, especially when it promises to punish you with death! shortly after appearing. Though the right strategy is not initially clear while Wracktail rampages around the screen, calling on a few classic Paper Mario techniques turns the encounter on its head almost instantly.
The player only needs to switch perspectives and hop on Wracktails back, at which point Mario, Luigi, Bowser, or any other playable character can be used to assault a sensitive antennae on the monsters head. A few hits to the big ol bulb at the antenna's tip should send him to the ground, at which point he riddles off more empty threats before spontaneously combusting. Go home, Wracktail. Youre drunk (or just tragically un-powerful).
Aegaeon the Hecatonchires (God of War: Ascension)
Aegaeon is probably the most outright grotesquely terrifying boss on this list, but relative to game's difficulty he may also be the easiest. As one of the three Hecatonchires (giants of incredible ferocity, more powerful than even the Titans), Aegeon ought to be a truly menacing opponent. He certainly looks the part, but...
Truth be told, the fight appears more epic than it actually is (and trust me, its one of the more cinematic fights in the game), as Aegaeon can be disposed of via relentless slashing and waiting for quick time events to activate. The whole thing takes about 15 minutes, and when Aegaeon does go down, taking chunks of buildings and rubble with him as his limp form slowly collapses, its a genuinely glorious sight. That said, its more of an endurance test than anything else, and certainly doesnt require a whole lot of strength or even player skill.
Of course, there are loads of easy bosses throughout gamedom--nobody expected Mr. Dooter to pack a punch, right? Do you have favorites of your own? Notice something weve missed? Let us know.
And if you're looking for more, check out gaming slogans you will never forget and 12 games where you control naked characters.