Weapons should stay in video games, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make them cool!
As any well adjusted person would attest, violence is never the answer and is very lame. However weapons can be undeniably cool; from their craftsmanship to their sheer power, they’re objectives that demand respect.
Do you know what else is cool? Video games! That’s why the entire UDS staff has got together to share some of their favourite weapons from throughout the breadth of the gaming world…
Dobbie: Rift Inducer (and its upgraded forms) – Ratchet and Clank Series
The Ratchet and Clank series of games are very dear to my heart. The colourful worlds and the sense of humour were both things my younger self gravitated towards naturally, but it’d be remiss to say that the real meat and fun of the series wasn’t the large arsenal of crazy weapons you could use. Weapons like the more serious and typical Blaster sat quite comfortably alongside the more silly offerings, such as the Qwack-O-Ray which morphed enemies into ducks.
My favourite weapon from across the entire series is the Rift Inducer, and its upgraded form the Rift Ripper. Most weapons are used to kill enemies, and it’s entirely possible that the Rift Inducer does this – it’s just that, well, there’s a chance that maybe it doesn’t do this at all. The Rift Inducer, in basic terms, is a gun that fires a black hole out of its muzzle, which then proceeds to – you guessed it – suck up all the enemies who stray too close to it. Do they die upon entering the black hole? Most likely. Is that guaranteed? Well, maybe they’re just being placed somewhere else in the universe entirely? Perhaps they are being sucked into an alternative universe or dimension? There’s no real way of knowing (although the enemies do drop bolts – the game’s currency – upon entering the black hole, so the likelihood is death. But hey, it’s fun to imagine the other possibilities, right?).
The Rift Inducer returns in a later game in the series as the Rift Inducer 5000 (which upgrades into the Rift Ripper 5000). In this form, rather than just open a black hole to suck enemies in, the weapon opens up a portal through which the tentacles of some giant interdimensional creature emerge to attack and kill your enemies. In doing research for this piece, I’ve discovered that this creature is named Fred. So next time you find yourself in a spot of trouble in the Polaris Galaxy and pull out your Rift Inducer 5000, make sure to shout a hearty thank you to Fred for all his help!
Craig: The Hidden Blade – Assassin’s Creed Series
Assassin’s Creed started out on the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 and since then has had multiple entries, spin-offs and what can only be described as a deluge of merchandising opportunities. Before it became an absolute juggernaut, the first game followed a man called Altaïr Ibn-LaʼAhad who went around butchering Templars in a stealth-like fashion from the rooftops – his weapon? The Hidden Blade.
The Assassin’s Creed Fandom states “The standard model of Hidden Blade crafted by the Italian Brotherhood during the Renaissance era was constructed from a bar of iron and at least two coils; three gears, two sprockets, one chain, and three screws alongside the hide for the leather bracer.”
What makes the Hidden Blade a great weapon is… well, because it’s hidden! If you see someone coming toward you wearing a leather bracer around their arm, I’d suggest you be really cautious. Due to its nature of always being on its person, it is a weapon that can be deployed at any time with just the flick of the wrist. Modifications on the weapon include the poison blade, hidden gun and even a “footblade”, so it is one versatile piece of equipment and can help you when you’re stalking your next kill or just trying to get out of a pinch.
Despite the Hidden Blade not being in the most recent games in any meaningful way, it is still a big part of the series’ legacy, along with parkour and the butchering of Ezio Auditore da Firenze’s name. Expect to see The Hidden Blade coming back in the latest release Valhalla as they hope to bring lapsed fans back to the series and ignite those instakill needs.
Tom: Lightsaber – Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy
Yes, I know the Lightsaber will be a contentious pick, given its origins are based in the Star Wars movies, rather than a video game. But this entry is for a specific presentation of the power and lethality of everyone’s favourite laser sword; namely that found in Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy.
It’s unique in that the Lightsaber is always active, meaning even when you’re not swinging, it interacts with any surface (or enemy) it comes into contact with, making it feel like a more realistic, dangerous weapon. What’s more, Jedi Academy’s animations play out freely from other agents in the world. There’s no kill animations here like you would expect in Assassin’s Creed or the Batman Arkham Trilogy, instead it’s a more holistic, fully dynamic system that can be more chaotic, but is infinitely more satisfying when you land a killing blow. You can also choose from single, double and dual-bladed lightsaber configurations, offering even more choice when it comes to combat.
Feeling particularly sadistic? Download the bloodPLUS gore/dismemberment mod; it does exactly what you think it does. Rather than cauterized wounds and pristine corpses, now your Lightsaber can hack off specific body parts in gloriously visceral detail.
A special mention must go to the Force as well. Although not necessarily an offensive weapon, it offers many options for incapacitating or maiming your adversary. From Force Lightning to strangulation, there’s plenty of ways to hurt someone with those seemingly innocuous Midi-chlorians.
Drew: Masamune – Final Fantasy 7
Bigger is better – that’s the philosophy that clearly drove Square Enix and whoever forges everyone’s weapons in the world of Final Fantasy 7, and when seeing the result, it’s hard to disagree with them. They scoff at a pistol with its boring single barrel, and put three on Vincent’s Cerberus gun. They laugh at the idea of practical swordsmithing, and for Cloud’s Buster Sword opted for a blade as wide as a whole human.
But Sephiroth’s monstrous odachi Masamune takes the cake in my mind, mainly because of its obvious impracticality, and what that implies about the guy that wields it, because no one has ever overcompensated so much as Sephiroth – the exact length varies between games, but even at its smallest size of 8 feet, you have to wonder what weapon he’s naturally equipped with to motivate this. I love to imagine him screaming “MORE!” at a blacksmith like Kylo Ren in The Last Jedi.
Does it make him more effective in combat than a standard sword? Not really, no. Do you remember that sword, though? Absolutely. Who needs balance and manoeuvrability when you look like a badass? Sephiroth walks into the room, and it’s impossible not to notice Masamune. Probably because the tip of it precedes Sephiroth by a good several minutes wherever he goes.
Just like every other part of Sephiroth, from his thrice-daily shampooed silver hair to his open-chested leather bondage coat, Masamune is a deliberate statement from a tremendously insecure man. It says, “I will deliberately handicap myself in order to look more imposing. I can kill you in an instant even if I have to crab-walk sideways through a doorway like a dog with a stick in its mouth. And I absolutely have a bigger penis than you, honestly.”
Neale: Metal Gear REX – Metal Gear Solid Series
I can’t get enough of mechs – my identity has been based around this fictional notion of giant metal bodies duking it out for as long as I can remember. One of the first instances I really found myself clicking with them was when I first played Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty – I hadn’t played the first title at this point, but I was mesmerized with that titular steel monster. At the time I had no idea that Metal Gear RAY was just the tip of the iceberg.
The original Metal Gear for the MSX2 was where we were met with one of the first walking bipedal tanks – Metal Gear. Capable of launching Nuclear Weapons while moving, it was considered the ultimate weapon.
Metal Gear REX was first introduced to us in Metal Gear Solid for the original Playstation. Set 10 years after the events of Metal Gear, we were once again tasked with taking down a more evolved version of the ultimate weapon ((ultimater weapon? editor please check this for me)).
REX is kitted out with miniguns, lasers, anti-tank missiles, and nuclear weapons, making it a truly formidable weapon. Well, unless of course you’re Solid Snake, which means it’s probably just another tuesday for you.
The entire purpose of the Metal Gear arsenal (not to be confused with the Metal Gear unit, Arsenal Gear) was to be a nuclear deterrent, and to that end they eventually serve their purpose, although not without some degree of flawed logic. I think ultimately what matters is that REX is capable of potentially wiping out all life on Earth in one quick attack, and it looks real sleek.
It might not be the newest model, or the most advanced, but Metal Gear REX is definitely the coolest bipedal tank in the franchise.
And that’s a wrap on our favourite weapons from video games. Did we miss your favourite? Let us know in the comments below!
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