12 videogame stories that jumped the shark

There is no better way to end GamesRadar’s Shark Weekthan by preying upon sharkdom’s oldest and greatest catchphrase, “Jumping the Shark.” Popularized by the literal jumping of a shark in a 1977 episode of Happy Days, the colloquialism is now used to describe something veering into absurdity or lesser quality.

Games may still be growing as a storytelling medium, but that hasn’t stopped various writers and producers from interjecting implausible, outrageous and downright stupid ideas into plotlines that were already taxing our suspension of disbelief. Collected here are some of our very favorite, most egregious examples.

Contributing editors: Chris Antista, Charlie Barratt, Brett Elston, Henry Gilbert, Matt Keast, Mikel Reparaz

Bionic Commando

The basic plot: Guy with bionic grapple-arm enters warzone to save the day and search for clues about his wife’s disappearance.

Jumps the shark when: You find out the bionic grapple-arm IS his wife. Yes, you read that right - the huge mass of metal hanging off his shoulder somehow contains the “essence” of his long-lost spouse. It turns out that bionic appendages need a strong emotional bond to function, so she sacrificed herself to the robo-gods so you could pretend to be Spider-Man.

It’s one of the most forced and ridiculous “twists” we’ve ever encountered, needlessly complicating the existence of bionics. Before this absurd revelation, the arm was just an arm. Wasn’t that good enough? Doesn’t this mean the girl with two bionic legs had to blend both of her kids into bio-juice so she could walk again?