The Metal Gear Solid games follow our hero, Solid Snake, through a series of ham-fistedly operatic stealth adventures as he tries to save the world from total destruction while wielding a 1980s Kurt Russell mullet wig. However, the third entry in the series (appropriately titled Metal Gear Solid 3) is a prequel, detailing the exploits of Solid Snake's one-eyed predecessor and eventual nemesis, Naked Snake, as he tiptoes his way through a communist jungle in the 1960s, snapping necks and disarming nuclear weapons.
The Crazy Fan Theory:
This one comes from Tyler Humphrey at Twinfinite, who posits that Metal Gear Solid 3 is really just a virtual reality training simulation that Solid Snake is participating in. Everything you see and experience in the game is all part of the simulation -- none of it is really happening.
Consider the evidence: At the beginning of the game, Major Zero (the Zordon to Naked Snake's Green Power Ranger) informs us that we are about to embark on a "virtuous mission." Naked Snake mishears this and asks, "Virtual mission?"
"Didn't you ever play Virtual Boy? Those goggles give me the headache of a thousand hangovers."
Granted, this is about as substantial a piece of evidence as Paul McCartney's bare feet on the cover of Abbey Road, but it gets us thinking about the whole virtual reality thing right off the bat. Furthermore, the previous game, Metal Gear Solid 2, was revealed to be nothing but a virtual simulation in a surprise twist during the game's climax. So the producers of Metal Gear are making damn sure "this might all be fake" is the neighborhood our minds are playing in as soon as Metal Gear Solid 3 begins.
Much stronger evidence occurs if, during the course of the game, you kill a man named Ocelot, who is a crucial character in the previous two entries of the series. Remember, Metal Gear Solid 3 is a prequel, so killing Ocelot would be like killing off Obi-Wan Kenobi in Attack of the Clones (although by that point, none of us cared anymore).
Come back when you're Alec Guinness.
Anyway, should you kill Ocelot, the game ends and you get yelled at for screwing up the future timeline ... by Roy Campbell, a character who does not otherwise appear in Metal Gear Solid 3. Roy Campbell is Solid Snake's contact in the other Metal Gear games. However, as we previously mentioned, a man named Major Zero is supposed to be your contact in this game, and indeed, every other time you screw something up, it is Zero's voice you hear scolding you about it.
Why then would you suddenly hear Roy Campbell's voice berating you about creating a time paradox? Because Metal Gear Solid 3 is just Solid Snake playing a training mission, and whenever you do something that alters the timeline of events, you hear Campbell yanking him out of the simulation like Jeff Fahey in The Lawnmower Man. Given what we already know about the crazy-bastardness of the game's creator, Hideo Kojima, this doesn't seem that far-fetched.
The Mass Effect games tell the story of intergalactic hero Shepard as he or she (the character's gender and appearance are totally up to you) does battle with the Reapers, an ancient race of super-huge robo aliens known for wiping out entire civilizations, because when you're a planetoid cyborg, what the hell else are you going to do? Their two methods of civilization murder are good old-fashioned destruction and Borg-like indoctrination wherein they assume control of living beings and bend them to their will (see Animal Crossing, above).
Plus, somewhere in there Seth Green pokes a robot.
At the end of Mass Effect 3, you're given three options to supposedly end the Reaper threat: control the Reapers (Shepard dies), synthesis (which effectively turns everyone into Reapers), or destroy the Reapers (Shepard dies, probably). All in all, it's a pretty thankless and confusing way to end an epic trilogy (this is a phenomenon called "The Dark Knight Rises Effect").
The Crazy Fan Theory:
Shepard was slowly being indoctrinated by the Reapers all along, across all three games, and the ending of Mass Effect 3 represents their final attempt to assimilate Shepard. There is a fucking two-hour documentary assembled by fans that laboriously goes over every possible clue in the series, but we're only going to talk about the ending, because we just microwaved some Hot Pockets and they're starting to get cold.
Lenin and McCarthy Via Wikimedia
Nothing complements a sci-fi epic adventure like 99 cents' worth of microwaved grease.
Toward the end of Mass Effect 3, Shepard gets blasted with a powerful dose of Reaper energy, like a hose of evil psychic techno-alien anger juice. The series constantly emphasizes that people get indoctrinated after prolonged exposure to the Reapers (and Shepherd has been around them for three games at this point), so fans suggest that this herculean laser zap was the final straw, and that everything afterward is a result of the Reapers invading Shepard's mind.
Walk it off, you big baby.
Check it out: After the blast, the world takes on the hazy fuzziness of a dream. Bodies mysteriously vanish from the battlefield and people appear out of thin air as if the rules of the universe no longer apply. Sounds a lot like a guy struggling with an alien-induced hallucination, right?
When you make the final choice to wield, join, or destroy the Reapers, all three options are color-coded, just like every other choice you've made in the entire series -- blue represents the good or just choice, green is neutral, and red is evil. Now look at this picture of the final choice in action:
If only life were so simple.
You would assume that the obviously blue-hued selection would be to eliminate the Reapers and save the Earth (good), whereas the red-stained option would be to take control of them to rule the galaxy (evil), right? You'd be totally justified in thinking that, and you'd also be committing a huge space error, because that assumption is utterly incorrect. The blue choice is to control the Reapers, and the red choice is to destroy them (the middle choice is to join the Reapers, but if you make that selection you should just eject the game disc and snap it in half because you're playing it wrong).
You might be playing it wrong, but it feels so right ...
So why would the blue choice suddenly be evil, when it's been good for the entire series? Because the Reapers are inside Shepard's mind, trying to influence your decision. We've already pointed out that it seems like Shepard is hallucinating during the entire final sequence -- the Reapers are just making Shepard see the evil choice as being the noble one in an effort to trick you into joining them and completing Shepard's indoctrination, and also to purchase all of the upcoming DLC packs.
"Microtransactions are the beating heart of the galaxy!"
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask is about an adventurer named Link trying to find his lost fairy companion Navi, because apparently he didn't get enough of her annoying bullshit in Ocarina of Time. On his way through the forest, Link gets mugged by a lunatic named Skull Kid and must go on a quest to track him down, completely forgetting about finding Navi in the process.
The Crazy Fan Theory:
This one has been floating around long enough that we're not sure who first came up with it. But there is a nice summary here explaining why the events of Majora's Mask are all occurring inside of Link's head and represent the five stages of grief over the loss of his friend.
"Hey! Avenge me!"
According to the theory, Link actually gets knocked out (or into a damn coma, depending on how long it takes you to beat the game) after he falls off his horse during the opening sequence, and the rest of the game takes place in his mind.
The first place Link gets to is Clock Town, where the mayor and his citizenry are preparing for their annual Carnival of Time festival in utter and complete denial of the hovering death planetoid leering down at them all from space:
"Boy, the crickets sure are ominously talkative tonight!"
That evil moon is going to destroy the world in three days unless Link can find Skull Kid in time, but every single person in Clock Town simply refuses to believe that it's there. Mutoh, the carnival leader, literally says:
"You cowards! Do you actually believe the moon will fall? The confused townsfolk simply caused a panic by believing this ridiculous, groundless theory."
And the soldiers seem confused when people start disappearing, as if the enormous murder moon isn't hanging in plain, horrific sight like a bloody chandelier:
It's either the looming death planet, or the snow cone stand ran out of cherry again.
That's denial, the first stage of grief. The people of Clock Town don't want to believe that their world is ending, and their denial represents Link's denial that his friend Navi is truly gone.
Link's next stop takes him to Woodfall, where the king adamantly believes (totally without justification) that a harmless monkey has taken his princess captive, because apparently this is a Disney movie. The irrational fury gripping the king and his people represents anger, more specifically anger over the loss of a loved one. That's the second stage of grief, meant to demonstrate Link's anger over Navi's twinkling ass bailing on him.
"Mickey Dolenz shall pay for his crimes!"
Bargaining, the third stage of grief, occurs at Snowhead, where Link finds a ghost named Darmani who wants to be brought back to life. Darmani is trying to strike up a deal to save himself from oblivion with someone who absolutely does not have the power to do so, sort of like Bill Cosby in Ghost Dad trying to barter his way back from the spirit world by offering a gas station attendant a pair of scratch-off lottery tickets.
"Seriously, I'll give you all of my Pokemon cards."
Next, Link goes to Great Bay, where a creature named Lulu is wallowing in self-pity over her lost eggs. This is depression, the fourth and most obvious stage of grief, because death is fucking sad.
Finally, Link gets to Ikana Canyon, where he battles his way up a tower and faces four forms of himself -- the four previous stages of grief. He climbs the tower and leaves them behind, achieving light arrows in the process. This is acceptance, the final stage of grief -- Link has faced denial, anger, bargaining, and depression and has moved beyond them, probably while a Bryan Adams song was playing.
Although "Summer of '69" might not have been our first choice.
He never does find Navi, which makes the grief theory seem all the more plausible -- instead of spending any more time searching for her, Link just goes on with his life, a phrase that here means "relives Ocarina of Time over and over again because Nintendo won't stop rereleasing it."
Related Reading: Hungry for more fan theories that make a crazy amount of sense? Click hard, dear friend. You'll learn about the 700-year murdering spree Wall-E must have gone on. We've got more fan theories to send your way- these ones are all about classic movies. Fight Club feels like a different film when you see the characters as grown-up Calvin and Hobbes. Still haven't had enough? Read these insane but convincing fan theories about kids cartoons.
We have a wild theory too- the Blues Brothers played a part in the bank robbery from Reservoir Dogs. Our evidence? Right here.