Zelda: Twilight Princess was the first *real* game I bought for Wii. Today I took the time to get back in, beat up the last boss -still not spoiling, hehe- and therefore I’d like to announce now that I completed the game! Hooray!!
Well, that’s really something and though I won’t give away the story, I really like to talk about endings.
This is of course my very personal opinion and it only affects story-driven computer games but in some cases or maybe even more often than not the endings suck. Big time. I mean, if you have taken the time to make it through the whole game and even if the story was well woven into the gameplay and you had rich story-telling, interesting characters you loved or hated and everything, the game should present you with a nice outro or epilog just so you don’t lose the feeling immediately. It’s really that simply. I should have some examples for bad endings now. Well, how about Leisure Suit Larry. I played 5, 6 and 7 and everytime I finished I had the feeling that the whole story parts in the middle were more interesting than what they’d present with the end. I might remember wrong, but it always came quickly and involved some kind of last encounter with a girl which ultimately failed (like always with Larry) but I always thought they might have delivered it a bit better. Just like fireworks at the end -remember Monkey Island 1, they really had fireworks- that make you remember the whole journey. Yes! But even some Lucas masterpieces lack a thrilling ending, I think of Jedi Knight for example. I probably can’t recall most of the bad endings because I simply forgot about those games. I probably could add Fahrenheit to the list. They’re all good games and good stories but the endings did not live up to my expectations and I didn’t feel rewarded.
The two Zelda games I’ve finished (A link to the past and Twilight Princess) both give a kind of revisiting collage at the end during the credits. That’s cool because it sums up all the characters you’ve met and most of the places you’ve been to. It’s a nice feeling after hours of playing to see how much good you did and remember it. It’s like looking at photos. And although they don’t connect all the dots in the end, you feel more satisfied.
I think I know how hard it is to come up with a cool ending to a story but when it comes to games, players should be rewarded for all the time they invested into them.