Serge Becomes Lynx
Our list of 10 Awesome WTF Moments in RPGs starts with this RPG classic. Chrono Cross is the story about a hapless kid named Serge who is tasked with saving the world after he has a dream about his true origin. You all know the story because it's pretty much the same in every JRPG and usually involves a band of youths (apparently older folk can't get a lot of stuff done), who fight a great evil. In this case, one of the great evil's minions is a recurring mid-boss named Lynx, who is this crazy-looking cat-man. During a boss fight with the giant fuzzball, Serge falls unconscious. Upon waking, both he and the player are surprised to find that he's in Lynx's body! So then he has no choice but to defeat his friends in combat. What a bummer. Serge then spends a lot of time as the enemy before returning to his own body. Talk about a freaky Friday.
Aeris Dies (We Will Never Let You Forget)
Final Fantasy VII
It's been beaten to death and always shows up on lists like this, but this Final Fantasy VII scene has had such an impact on so many players that it would be doing the moment a disservice to not be included. Not much more needs to be said, so take your moment of silence for our favorite fallen flower-girl.
Tali's Face (Or Should We Say 'Fake'?)
Mass Effect 3
Anyone who was enamored with the young Quarian engineer since the first Mass Effect always wondered what she looked like under that mask. It was just a shame that Tali could never take off her enviro-suit or her weak immune system would cause her to explode. There were a lot of mock-ups and fan art pics on the internet that showed what people thought her face looked like. The results were all very different, but mostly stayed true to the descriptions of Quarians in the game's Codex and all of them had a decidedly "alien" look. So it came as shock in Mass Effect 3, (if the players had Shepard pursue a relationship with her), when Tali's face was revealed via a photograph on the Commander's nightstand and she looked surprisingly unlike an alien. The WTF part came when internet sleuths found out that BioWare had used a stock photo that had been edited to look slightly more alien. Needless to say, this did not hold over well with many Tali fanboys.
Fawkes is a Girl?
This a mistake that a lot of people have made, but it's a popular theory. The friendly super mutant companion, Fawkes, can be found in Vault 87 in Fallout 3 and proves to be a very powerful sidekick. But further investigation of the Vault leads the player to a computer terminal that has details about a female inhabitant called, "Specimen D164". This led many Fallout 3 players to believe that this specimen was Fawkes' previous identity, before the mutation. Of course, this assumption slapped "guh?" expressions on the faces of a lot of players until Bethesda confirmed that Fawkes was indeed male.
Star Ocean: Till The End of Time is an MMO?!
Star Ocean: Till The End of Time
At one point in the game, the heroes from Star Ocean: Till the End of Time cross through the ominous Gate of Time and end up in another dimension above their own. To add to their shock, Fayt Leingod and the crew learn that their 3D dimension was created by people in 4D Space as a sort of massively multiplayer online RPG / simulated reality called the Eternal Sphere. This means that the main characters are video game programs within a video game progam, which would be Xzibit's cue to step into the frame. Once they find out about the Eternal Sphere, you can almost see the existential panic wash over their polygonal faces.
Little attention is paid to the very underrated Suikoden II and even less goes to one of the supporting characters, Nanami. She was the main character's surrogate big sister and was with him on the adventure from the very beginning. Now, Aeris' death always takes center stage, but we feel that noble Nanami should be given her dues as well, especially since her death came out of nowhere and stuck in the minds of fans long after the final battle. The only way to save her is to have all 108 recruitable characters up to the point in the game in which she gets hit by an arrow. There are also some stat requirements and certain decisions that have to be made during the story, but if you're successful, she will feign death and come back during the ending. Getting all 108 characters means you had to have beaten the original Suikoden as well, so saving yourself from tears took some work if you started with the sequel. Namami's Death marks the halfway point on our list of 10 Awesome WTF Moments in RPGs.
Id Throws The Yggdrasil Sandship
Early on in Xenogears, supporting character Bart and his crew of sand pirates on the Yggdrasil encounter a Red Gear (a mecha), piloted by a villain who is later known as Id. So what do you do when you come across a strong and mysterious foe? Why, you launch your sandship and land on him, of course! This works out great for the pirates until Id lifts the ship up and chucks it with one hand, like it was a 5lb medicine ball. After that scene, we doubt that many players were looking forward to any boss fights with Id.
The Destruction of Expel
Star Ocean: The Second Story
Imagine that you've just spent half of a game running around a world, in which swords and sorcery prevail, after being tasked with investigating the cause of the sudden increase in the number of monsters in the world. You've met kings, fought in tournaments in castle towns, and even defended a fort from encroaching hordes of monsters. Along the way, you've gathered mages, swordsmen, and even a dude possessed by two dragons. Now imagine you fight your way to the top of a tower to face a dangerous evil only to find 10 aliens who have set the planet on a collision course with their home planet so they can get close enough to teleport back. And now everything you had been working so hard to save from monsters has been destroyed by aliens. Yeah, that kind of ruins your day.
The Soylent System
Another goodie from Xenogears! This time we see main characters Fei, Elly, and Citan stuck in a facility that processes meat. Feeling famished, Fei and Elly pig out and eat some of the canned meat they find in the facility as Citan respectfully refuses because he has, shall we say, an inkling of some sort. As they go into the next room, they see where the meat is processed and Citan's fears are confirmed: they were eating the meat of humans that had been turned into the very mutants they fought earlier in the game. We share in Fei and Elly's disgust because of what they ate, but we're even more perturbed that Citan knowingly let them do it. Kind of a dick move, Citan.
The Entire Kingdom Hearts Storyline
Kingdom Hearts Series
Where do we even --- but the thing with the Keyblades is ---- and then there's the part with the Heartless and the Nobodies --- gahhh! Just watch the video while we down some aspirins. But there it is, the #1 entry on our list of 10 Awesome WTF Moments in RPGs is actually trying to understand the plot of the Kingdom Hearts series. Now if you'll excuse us, our brains could use some unscrambling.
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