Transcending gaming history and the world, this is a tale of weapons, eternally overpowered. These are items that can change the entire course of a multiplayer game in a second, either by strategically altering the landscape of the match or by wreaking havoc throughout the digital arena. When playing these games, the items listed here should be desired--and feared--above all others.
The seven that follow have caused infinite amounts of screams, curses, and hair-pulling throughout the ages. Players never wanted to be on the business end of these things, and when they were, they knew rough times were ahead. We hope none of these items cause any sort of bad memories, but if they do remember to breathe and continue on, there's nothing to be afraid of here.
7. Hammer (Super Smash Brothers)
Super Smash Bros. is full of classic Nintendo-themed items to match the classic Nintendo-themed characters and stages. The Super Star grants temporarily invincibility (as they're known to do), the Fire Flower acts as a flamethrower (because, obviously), and the Maxim Tomato grants some health back (because they're nutritious and delicious). However, no Smash item strikes fear into the hearts of opponents quite like the Hammer from Donkey Kong.
Whoever wields this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Jumpman. They become a conduit for wanton destruction, waving the hammer around and launching any sorry sap it hits into the stratosphere. Grabbing the hammer briefly turns the Smash match into horror movie--a twisted game of keep away, and you better keep away unless you want to see the fireworks of death.
6. The Redeemer (Unreal Tournament)
Most online shooters include rocket launchers and high-powered plasma cannons in some form, using them as an "ultimate weapon." That kind of firepower can give any soldier on the digital battlefield pause, but none are as intimidating as Unreal Tournament's Redeemer. Take Master Chief's Spartan Laser and glue it to Doomguy's BFG and you have something that is a peashooter at the feet of the Redeemer.
What makes the Redeemer so potent? Well, it's a mini nuclear warhead launcher. That's right, it launches miniature NUKES. Not just a little old rocket explosion when firing this baby; we get a full-on nuclear explosion that vaporizes anyone unfortunate enough to be on the receiving end of it. Unreal has a history of upping the ante in the shooter genre, but the Redeemer is destruction nirvana.
5. The AWP (Counter-Strike)
The AWP is the king of sniper rifles. Nothing found in Battlefield, Call of Duty, or any other realistic military shooter can hold a candle to the sheer killing power of this absurd weapon. Unless you shoot an opponent in the leg, the AWP will bring him or her down in one shot in a cacophonous roar. One. Shot. Think about that: an instant kill for anything above the waistline, regardless of previous health, distance from the opponent, and every other factor involved in a multiplayer match. It's death incarnate.
There's nary a Counter-Strike match to be seen without the AWP making an appearance at least once. Oh, and if you're still not convinced, it used to be called the Magnum Sniper Rifle. The power of a .357 Magnum stored instead in a long-range sniper rifle; the possibilities are endless. We want to call the AWP the best long-range gun in all of gaming, but we can't do that knowing about our next weapon...
4. The FarSight XR-20 (Perfect Dark)
Like the AWP, the FarSight from Perfect Dark can stop any enemy in its tracks with just one bullet (or whatever it is this thing shoots). Unlike the AWP, there's no limitations. You shoot the head, chest, leg, wherever you want and the FarSight will drop the bad guy like it's nothing. Oh, where they are isn't a factor either, as the FarSight can see and shoot through SOLID WALLS. There's no hiding from death--if he wants you, he takes you.
It's bad enough that the FarSight turns a Perfect Dark match into one-hit Wonderland, but adding the "see opponents through walls and shoot them" wrinkle makes it even more dangerous. What a shame that it's limited to just Perfect Dark--imagine if this thing made it into other games! How many lives would be saved? Gears of War's campaign would have ended in an afternoon--Marcus Fenix could have sat on the toilet and sniped their queen from his bathroom.
3. The Energy Sword (Halo)
Another one-hit wonder weapon, the Energy Sword from Halo is a melee instrument after our own hearts (as in it's literally after our hearts). A giant, shiny, two-bladed plasma sword that can cut through just about anything it attacks? Sign us up. Even with the array of guns the Halo games supply, one must always be wary when a swordsman is afoot, lest they be lying on the ground with a hole in their chest.
Later Halo games introduced the Gravity Hammer to counter the Energy Sword, but even that couldn't stand up to the speed and brutality of the Sangheili Special. If you're playing a Halo match and you know where the sword rests on the map, go there and grab it immediately. Even if you keep it hidden as a secondary weapon, just having it will give you a humongous advantage because it means that no one else can use it on you. Incredibly, even with its abilities, the Energy Sword is dwarfed in comparison to this next pointy object...
2. The Knife (Call of Duty)
"How is the Call of Duty knife more powerful than the other stuff on this list?" you're likely asking. "Have you guys gone mad?" We acknowledge that the standard melee weapon for the Call of Duty series may look out of place this high on the list--it is, after all, sharpened metal and a handle--but hear us out. It's a one-hit-kill, it automatically aims for the chest of the nearest enemy when you swipe it, and everyone has one. Like, every person just starts with a melee weapon more powerful than a machine gun.
The knife is powerful enough on its own, scoring one-hit kills as soon as it touches an enemy, but with the perks and upgrades that Call of Duty supplies, the knife can make a case for being the ONLY weapon to use. Spend your points wisely and you're running faster than anyone, lunging further than anyone, and stabbing so fast you might as well have a lightsaber.
1. The Blue Shell (Mario Kart)
Fear. Pure, unadulterated terror strikes the heart and mind of every go-kart racer the instant that whooshing sound is heard. You know you're in the lead, you know what's coming, and you know it's just not going to be good. The Blue Shell has ruined friendships. It has ruined lives. Upon use, the Blue Shell immediately targets the leader and blows him away in a giant blue fireball of pain. Is it fair? Not really. Is it satisfying to use? You bet!
We especially love it when a particularly pompous participant gets his comeuppance via this blue bastion of bleakness. After minutes of bragging his or her reaction to suddenly being in the middle of the pack is music to our ears. We don't normally condone spite in our multiplayer, but the Blue Shell is a welcome exception. Beware the whoosh, Mario Kart fans. It only bring destruction.
We know we missed a bunch of big-time weaponry, so let us know in the comments what sorts of overpowered items didn't make this list. We'd love to hear what we forgot.