31-Day Mage Challenge: Day Thirteen – “Favorite Boss Fight”

31 Day NES Well-Red Cover

“A hero is only as good as the villain.” See? Video games and DC comics understand that. Why can’t Marvelites? Haha! Nothing tops off an excellent video game experience like a dollop of whipped cream and a cherry like a jaw-dropping boss battle. Heart-pounding, skill-testing, stressful and delightful, boss battles push everything to the limit, often the hardest challenge in the entire game. We need boss fights as the final climax, if only so we can get our kicks in without actually fighting our real life bosses. The hero shines all the brighter, the darker the backdrop, the bigger the threat.

Boss fights are crucial! Don’t agree with me? Don’t make me assume my ultimate form!! The Blood-Red Mage!

What is your Favorite Boss Fight?



timemage The Timely Mage

I struggled between Gaius and Avion in Shadow of the Colossus, Gray Fox and Rex in Metal Gear Solid, and MAWLR in Killzone 3 but I think I’ll settle on Gaius. Facing one of the largest Colossi in the game on an open platform with nowhere to hide while he attempts to crush you with his sword-like arm was one of the most thrilling boss battles I have ever fought.




blackmage The Black Humor Mage

Malus, the final boss in a game with nothing but boss battles, is my favorite boss battle. In Shadow of the Colossus you fight through 16 colossi, and the final one feels like a true triumph. He’s the biggest out of all of them, and the dark, stormy setting adds to the terror of trying to defeat the last one.




ragemage The Rage Mage

Nothing beat shoving victory in your Rival’s (Gary’s) gloating face on Pokemon Red/Blue, except for maybe beating him with a baseball bat afterward while his Pokemon look on, crying, “Noooo, don’t hurt my Daddy…!”


“Oh, yes… Sweat-Squeegee.”



FF3-NES-Summoner2 The Green Screen Mage

This one took me a while to figure out. There’s quite a few boss battles that I enjoyed and a lot more that I hated. Luckily, writing the Undertale review gave me my answer. The final boss during the True Pacifist run is by far my absolute favorite. You essentially get to battle through all of the old bosses and it’s hilarious and a little bit heartbreaking. And that song??? Come on! I won’t put up a picture, so I don’t spoil it for anyone who might play it. But listen to that music!



whiteoutmage The White Out Mage

I’m going to go with Bowser in Super Mario 64. I just love grabbing him by the tail and spinning him around. It’s such a funny idea. And it’s so stinking cute when Mario says “so long dear Bowser”. I can’t really decide which level is the funnest one, they are all essentially teh same with a few changes in your surroundings and the landscaping. Bowser in his low polygon form just seems to have a certain cuteness to him in Mario 64. It’s almost upsetting to “kill” him… but thankfully he’s invincible.




Untitled2 The Well-Red Mage

Again, so many awesome and unique-in-their-own-right choices to choose from: Mike Tyson (a funny name to start any list with, Bowser, Dr. Wily, Metal Man, Sephiroth, Psycho Mantis, Onslaught, Dark Samus, Master Hand, Sin, the Wall of Flesh, The End, The Sorrow, Ganon, Andross, Deathevan, Virgil, Sigma, Orochi, Culex, Barthandelus, Krang, Emerald Weapon, Yiazmat, Metal Gear Rays, Vega, Yellow Devil, Mr. Freeze, Queen Zeal, Giygas, any of the colossi (as my colleagues pointed out), Queen Pulsating Bloated Festering Sweaty Puss-Filled Malformed Slug for a Butt… *out of breath*

I love boss fights that make my heart race, sitting on the edge of the sofa. For that reason, I was almost about to place the final boss on Downwell (some kind of tubular sandworm thing) as my favorite. That’s a really hectic fight. But I’ve got to stick to my roots and choose a tie. It’s the first challenge I’ve ever had to do that for. The tie is between the final battle with an omnipotent “Emperor Joker” Kefka on FFVI AND the apocalyptic alien chrysalis Lavos from Chrono Trigger.

6de.jpgclichesnosgames_f_030Uematsu claimed that “Dancing Mad” which plays over the Kefka fight was his favorite composition but the music that accompanies Lavos’s final form, “Last Battle”, cannot be missed. Both are epic battle-ballads that encompass multiple themes and movements. The former is an operatic, religious, percussive giant and the latter is a fast-paced, SNES rock star spanning across time. Plus Lavos’ roar and Kefka’s laugh.

They’re marathon bosses with “ultimate forms” and stages at the climax of two of the greatest games ever made. I couldn’t pick just one.



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20 replies »

  1. Tbh a boss is a boss in my book.
    Obvs never seen Septhiroth, (but I’m in love with Jenova!)
    I’d say, for me, I liked MGS3 cos it was jus so… Poignant & emotional, that, after all that, it’s you & the person who trained you (who you love!) & it’s jus… Argh!!!! It felt like slapping Mum in’t face (something I’d NEVER do!!!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I nominate Koloktos from Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. There is some predictability in the Legend of Zelda games that once Link finds an item in a dungeon, it will be useful against the boss, but I found this boss was still enjoyable. The setting for the boss uses some vivid colours and the design is also interesting. I like the way the player has to use his own weapons against him. The boss is also difficult, without being too hard. I was thinking of suggesting the final, epic fight with Demise (but didn’t because the control system can be annoying) or Majora’s Mask (mainly because I first played against it without using the Fierce Deity mask and it took me a few hours).
    I was interested to read the thoughts about Bowser from Mario 64. I was also surprised by the list of bosses from the Metal Gear series, but was surprised Boss (from Metal Gear Solid 3) was not mentioned. I could never manage to use the close-quarters combat attacks properly, except fighting Boss. This seemed to transform Snake from being a gun fighter to martial arts expert, which created some interesting visuals.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I always go through a wide array of emotions whenever I face Dr. Wiley in a Mega Man game. The most challenging video game boss for me is IG-88 in Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire for N64. It took me FOREVER to beat him after finally resorting to the cheap method of hiding in the corner and nailing him with one shot at time.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. While it may not be the typical boss fight, the 1000 Heartless Battle in KH2 was definitely my favorite one. It was just one of those rare magic moments that helped put you in the shoes of the protagonist you’re playing. Even now I can just imagine myself, keyblade in hand, beating down each while thinking ” Will it ever end” as they continue to swarm me.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I believe Dancing Mad is based on Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor! And yes, yes, it is epic. I always think of it as gothic church music. Though I’m partial to a particular Ominous Latin Chanting “hymn,” I can’t deny the epicness of Kefka’s Theme and how it ties together with the very first song you hear when you turn on the game.

    In terms of amusement/fun, I have to go with Ultros in FFVI and to specify the fight on the stage of the opera. I mean come on! It’s on the stage during THE opera, one of the most famous, if not the most famous video game scenes ever created, and the Impressario has music specifically played for your boss battle (so meta. I love the “show within a show.”)

    I like the battle with Magus in Chrono Trigger, too, because if you answer correctly afterwards, you get a really powerful ally, and I was JUST explaining Lavos to one of my friends who’s never played the game before.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love the epic pictures of Kefka and Lavos! Great choices by everyone! I also approve of the White-Out Mage’s and the Rage Mage’s choices of Bowser and Gary respectively. Feels so good to get them down! My favorite bosses are from the Legend of Zelda series, and my all-time favorite is Goht from Majora’s Mask. He’s just seriously fun to fight. You get to roll as a spiked Goron around a track, constantly trying to chase down a mechanical bull. It’s an exhilarating boss battle. The Stallord fight achieves that need for speed with the Spinner as well, but Goht came first and still reigns supreme!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Its another cliche for me, I’m afraid! Sephiroth from FF7. The final battles of the game against him were really slow and felt anti-climactic. I had to use obscure tactics and status fixes when what I really wanted was the satisfaction of pummeling Sephiroth for you-know-what. Then… after the battles were done, you get that one amazing moment. No team members. No spells. No tactics. Its just you against Sephiroth head-to-head. Time for omnislash aaaaaand SLAM SLAM SLAM SLAM SLAM SLAM SLAM! It felt sooooooo good 😀 And for me it came about 6 months after he did you-know-what, so it was like seeing a villain die at the end of a TV show. SUCH closure!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh good lord, I haven’t fought this battle yet, but the Cerberus battle from FFXIV is something I look forward to. I don’t think I can adequately describe it, but according to online FAQ’s and YouTube videos the raid consists of three parties (12 players per party). One party has to handle adds, one concentrates on the chains to bind Cerberus to the walls and the other HAS TO BE SHRUNKEN BY HIS ATTACKS, THEN EATEN TO CONTINUE THE BATTLE IN HIS STOMACH! When his stomach lining is weakened he collapses in a weakened state and the parties outside his body have to reattach the chains to his legs! Failure to do so means everyone dies and has to start over.

    This, to me, is one of the most innovative ideas for a battle in ANY game, hands down! Unfortunately I haven’t been in a raid that has been able to get this far into the World of Darkness that I would be allowed to battle him (I haven’t done the raid many times). To add icing to the cake, the entire raid is based on Final Fantasy 3! So not only are all the other bosses FF3 related, the final boss of the raid is Cloud of Darkness herself! Absolutely incredible! Go to YouTube and watch some of the video guides!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Nice post! There are a lot, but right now come to my mind: almost all of the colossi from “Shadow of the Collossus”, specially Avion (5th) and Phalanx (13th) and Poseidon from God of War III opening.

    Liked by 2 people

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