The Internet is filthy with guides on creative ways to win video games. You don't need Cracked for that. But we've found that developers work just as hard at inventing hilarious and obscure ways for the player to die. That's a good thing, because we've always said that if you can't succeed, at least try to fail in an entertaining way.
#6. Sonic CD -- If You Forget to Pause, Sonic Gets Bored and Kills Himself
Sonic's whole marketing strategy was that he was Mario with attitude. He was as cool and edgy as middle-aged men in suits with 64KB of RAM could make him. He wagged his finger disapprovingly at the camera, wore radical red sneakers, and refused to take his ADHD meds -- if you kept him waiting, he'd impatiently tap his foot (unlike Mario, who just stood there staring ahead, lost in his own private world).
And if you kept Sonic waiting too long in Sonic CD, he broke his self-imposed vow of silence, assaulted the third dimension, and jumped to his death.
Say for instance you're halfway through Sonic CD and you take a quick breather to get a drink from the fridge but you forget to pause the game. You leave Sonic standing there, idly tapping his foot. There are no enemies on the screen anyway, so what's the worst that could happen?
They make you watch a cutscene from the Sonic cartoon?
Well, you'd better get back within three minutes, because if you don't, Sonic will exclaim "I'm outta here" ...
"Fuck this. I'm going over to one of those fanfics where I actually have genitalia."
... and jump out of the game to his death.
Now you're contemplating suicide.
Then you get the game's terrifying "you fucking lost" music, a warped tune accompanied by distorted laughter, which would be the most traumatizing thing here if your character hadn't just decided to end his life in front of you.
However, there is an extra level of dickery here, because that's Sega's specialty: The game doesn't put you back at your last checkpoint minus one life, like every other death. This one ends your game. As in you go back to the main menu and start from Level 1 with no Chaos Emeralds. What's that? You were on the penultimate level with 47 lives and two continues and you left the game unattended for three minutes? Well, we hope you have fun doing it all again.
Where Nintendo actively encourages you to take a break, Sega cripples you for not playing for 180 seconds. On an unrelated note, Nintendo won that console war.
#5. Harvest Moon DS -- Your Dog Mauls the Mayor to Death
Harvest Moon is a child-friendly farming game. It's essentially a $50 FarmVille, but friends you haven't spoken to in years can't harass you, so it's a fair trade-off. Other advantages over FarmVille include the ability to get married, the ability to have a kid, and the ability to allow your loyal dog to maul someone to death five minutes in, thus ending the game.
The game starts up as every agricultural simulator should: with two immortal deities locked in an eternal titanic struggle between good and evil. After that misplaced scene from Lost, you leave your house and meet the mayor, who welcomes you into the town and instantly starts criticizing your land.
C'mon. The land merits only four "ha"s. Five at most.
This doesn't sit well with you, so you use the wittiest comeback you can think of -- driving a scythe through his face:
The game was made in Tokyo's Russian district.
We're still in the intro, by the way, which at this point is way more entertaining than the actual game. The mayor continually evades your murderous assault until you run out of ammo, because scythes have ammo (it's Japanese). That's when your dog sees the scuffle and attacks the mayor, who begs you to call off the mutt. Now you have two options: "Help" or "Don't help."
"Giggle madly" is implicit either way.
If you help, the mayor credits your ambush skills (although this was more of a violent assault) and claims that the dog could win some local contests. He doesn't mention what contests, but seeing as the only skill the dog has shown is wanton bloodlust, we can only conclude that it's a highly illegal underground fighting arena.
Alternatively, you can say no:
Yep, the game fades out as the mayor lets out a blood-curdling scream, damning your soul for all eternity. You just witnessed your dog mauling an innocent man to death because of a fight that you started by trying to ram a scythe through his head. Oh, and like Sonic CD, if you lose this way, the game erases your save. We sure hope you like sitting through that 10-minute god fight again!
#4. Dishonored -- Take a Bath, Doom the Planet
Dishonored tells the story of Corvo Attano, a royal bodyguard who is framed for the murder of the queen of a steampunk Victorian England knockoff while the actual murderers take control of the country. His honor thoroughly dissed, Corvo joins the resistance in their hideout in a pub and starts sneaking around behind enemy lines, killing the usurpers to save the nation.
And then, about a third of the way through the game, it ends if you decide to take a bath.
After every mission, you go back to the pub and talk to the various members of your group, like Havelock the leader, Piero the geeky inventor, and Callista the woman. At one point, you find Piero peering through a lock, spying on Callista, who is having a bath. So you shoo the pervert away, but then you have the option to do the exact same thing yourself:
This is why hotels switched to key cards.
You can also barge in and tell the poor girl that Piero was watching her bathe (while watching her bathe), or, if you're feeling especially creepy today, you can ask to join her, saying, "Maybe you'd like some company?"
Steampunk worlds have walls made of lasers. Not yet invented: clean, clear water.
She very politely refuses your offer, arguing that "rats, plague, and tyranny have a way of killing the mood" (must be a woman thing). You can now leave the bathroom with what's left of your dignity or stay there and dick around, drinking from her sink, stealing her loose change, and using her toilet. Just don't try to take a page from the James Bond manual and jump into the bath with her to see if it leads to a steamy erotic scene, because this is what happens instead:
Or erectoncilable hostilities, as it were.
The resistance disbands due to "irreconcilable hostilities" and the game ends. It turns out women don't like heavily armed men jumping into the bath with them after they explicitly said no. So, the queen's killers are never brought to justice, the plague that is rampant will only get worse, and it's hinted that the world will end due to sentient whales getting pissed off at us for taking their oil ... all because you couldn't keep your dick in your steampunk assassin pants.