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Can’t Look Away: 15 Most Insane Torture Scenes In Video Game History

Teeth pulling! Lashing! Waterboarding! These terms can be used to describe the latest Fifty Shades of Grey film, but I’m using them in another context. I’m associating these phrases as acts that are used in video games to inflict pain and damage onto a very poor character.

Do you remember the early 2000s — when many people were obsessed with torture scenes in the film world? I sure remember those times, as it was what led film franchises such as Saw and Hostel which do so well at the box office. However, it wasn't just films that became obsessed with torture scenes. Video games also adopted those toe curling and disturbing torture scenes during the era. You may not remember all the gruesome scenes video games have included over the years, but you’d be surprised at how many of them come from popular franchises. Grand Theft Auto, BioShock, and Splinter Cell, are all massively popular series with grotesque violence in them.

Now, I have to caution you before you begin to read this list. If you are squeamish in any way, I’d be careful reading some of the entries on this list. Today we're going to be diving into some morbid, blood-chilling video game scenes. With that warning out of the way, it’s about time to begin this list of the "15 Most Insane Torture Scenes In Video Game History."

15 Where In God’s Name Are My Fingers?!

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When Outlast was released in 2013, it scared people half to death for many reasons. In particular, there was an infamous finger cutting scene that all of us cringed at. In this violent scene, a worker known as Rick Trager straps the main character, Miles Upshur, into a wheelchair. When strapped into the wheelchair Trager grabs a large set of scissors or a weapon similar to that and begins to attack Upshur with them. Trager puts Upshur's trapped fingers into the scissor like weapon and proceeds to cut two of them off. Not only is the look of amputated fingers disgusting, but players also get a visceral look at some bone on the inside. Overall, this is an insane torture scene — there's nothing quite like watching someone get their fingers removed.

14 No Russians Shall Survive!

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In Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, there is a mission entitled “No Russian,” and it is by far the most controversial scene in the entire video game franchise. In this scene, you as the player have to gun down an entire airport of innocent Russians. The reason this is on the list is that it is not only physical torture, as these people are bleeding out, but it is also emotional torture. This is because you as the player are murdering innocent families in front of each other. This means that while the victims are bleeding out, their last look will be watching their family member's dying from bullet wounds right before their very eyes. This emotional torture scene is truly horrifying, and no wonder it is also on the list of the "15 times Call Of Duty Went Too Far."

13 I Don’t Want To Go To The Dentist Anymore

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When Grand Theft Auto V first came out in 2013, many people were taken by surprise when they found out that the game had a torture scene in it. In this scene, Trevor tortures the character of Ferdinand Kerimov to find out where Tahir Javan is located. This is so Michael can assassinate him as he has terrorist ties. In order for Trevor to get information out of him, Trevor uses very violent torture methods such as waterboarding, hitting him with a wrench, and —worst of all— removing his tooth using a pair of pliers. After multiple rounds of torture, Kerimov reveals who Javan is, and Micheal is able to assassinate Javan with a sniper rifle. At the end of the torture scene instead of Trevor killing Kerimov, he brings him to the Los Santos Airport and lets him leave to start a new life.

12 No, Not The Eyes!

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Could you imagine going into eye surgery without having any pain relief drugs or sleeping gas? The thought of that makes me sick to my stomach. Well, that’s exactly what happened in Bioshock Infinite: Burial At Sea, as Elizabeth is tortured through a painfully slow attempted lobotomy. What happens here is that Elizabeth is captured and strapped to a chair while her attacker Atlas is torturing her by sticking a pick into her eye. Atlas is searching for information, and of course, the strong will heroine has no intention of divulging anything. Strong as she may be, it's an incredibly violent scene that would make anyone's skin crawl.

11 Not The Fingers Again!

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If you remember playing this intense video game, you’ll remember how cringe-worthy some of the scenes are. Well, in this specific torture scene, you are the one that has to torture yourself, Ethan Mars. In this scene, Mars has to cut off one of his fingers in front of a camera with a saw or a weapon of your choosing in order to find information about his kidnapped son’s whereabouts. What makes this scene even worse is the fact that you have a timer, and if you don’t cut off your finger within the time given, you won’t receive any information at all about your son. This scene would make anyone uncomfortable, to begin with, but his howling pain and loss of blood add a lot of agony to the already trying moment.

10 Would You Prefer The Good Cop Or Bad Cop To Torture You?

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In this scene, you have to interrogate Elias Kelham to find out if he ordered the hit on the anti-human campaigner Joram Talid. In the interrogation, you will have to extract information from Kelham quickly, as his lawyer is arriving quickly to save him. Being on a timer adds a ton of suspense, and slowly pushes you towards more brutal methods. This means you can either talk to him nicely or you can hit him with your fists to quickly extract the details about the murder of Talid. This excellent steam really puts your morality to the test, and illustrates that —in Mass Effect— there are moral gray areas. Sometimes, in order to save lives, you need to be a bit ruthless.

9 I Told You Laser Eye Surgery Was A Bad Idea!

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What’s up with people attacking eyes in torture scenes? This is the second eye torturing scene on this list, and there is a reason this torture scene is insane. This is because the characters in the game go into the eye puncturing machine (The Noontech Diagnostic Machine) at their own free will. This is because The Noontech Diagnostic Machine can extract useful information from the Lateral Geniculate and this information can’t be found out any other way than putting a needle through your eye. As a player, you have to remove the needle carefully from the eye of the character that is in the machine, and if you don’t his eye socket is brutally damaged. If you make a wrong move, the needle will go deeper into the character’s eye, puncture his brain, and (of course) kill him.

8 Are They Sausages Or Intestines?

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I’m not going to lie, Paz Ortega Andrade has had a hard life in the Metal Gear Solid franchise. For example, as a child, she hinted that she was taken advantage of physically, and in Metal Gear Solid V she has a bomb in her gut. Now, to remove the bomb from Andrade, the doctor has to cut open her stomach with no pain relief drugs and yank it out of her. This is an insanely violent scene, and watching the doctor remove the bomb will have you on the edge of your seat. Seeing the doctor shoves his hand into Andrade to extract the bomb is pure torture. Moreover, watching her intestines flail into the air is would make anyone uncomfortable.

7 Was I Just Taken Advantage Of By A Ghost?

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This, in my opinion, is by far the worst torture scene in the entire list. The reason for this is because you have to witness the main character of the game getting taken advantage of by a ghost. The ghost is called Alma, and the reason to why she tortures you intimately is even more insane than the actual assault itself. Alma is doing this to your character as she wants to have the character’s seed, so she is able to reproduce a child. The torture of this scene is so disgusting as even though it is less than a minute long you still get to see her on top of your character humping him. Things are even more uncomfortable when you realize that your character true has been taken advantage of by a ghostly spirit — and you may now have an unwanted child to contend with.

6 Wait, Did We Just Bomb Children?!

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Now, let’s be honest if you were in the army, your main objective would be to eliminate the enemy threat and try not to hurt any civilians. Well, in this case, you actually do the complete opposite of that. In this scene, you use white phosphorus to bomb and torture the enemies to eliminate the threat they hold. However, a mistake was made as you accidentally bomb civilians with white phosphorous so they ultimately die a slow and painful death. What makes this scene even worse is the fact that when you find the burnt and tortured bodies, you see the corpses of a woman covering a child’s eyes against the lethal white phosphorous. To sum it up, this brutal scene is one of the most vivid war moments in video game history — you've been warned.

5 I Don’t Think You’re Supposed To Play The Piano With Your Head

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In the game, you play as Sam Fisher who is investigating the hit and run death of his daughter Sarah. Through the death of his daughter, he has become hell bent on finding out who is responsible for the murder of Sarah. The game has numerous torture scenes —which you might expect from a revenge hungry father— but my personal favorite is one that involves the piano. In this scene, you get to use a variety of different methods to get information out of the enemy, and one involves you throwing the enemy’s head onto the piano keys and then punching the back of his head. This breaks the keys on the piano, which acts as a crescendo to your pursuit.

4 Please! Not The Saw!

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In Quake 4, in order to be transformed into a Strogg soldier, you must go through Stroggification. This is the process where you are stripped down to your underwear, and a machine removes your limbs one by one. This is so they can replace your human limbs with Strogg limbs, so they can take more damage during battle. What makes this scene even more insane is the fact that you can see the blood and bones sticking out of the removed limbs. It is also worth noting that not everyone in Stroggification survives the surgery. This is proven when you walk past the Stroyent Dispersal Facility as you will see the remains of the innocent people who didn’t survive. It's brutal scene that would easily fit among "15 Shockingly Violent Games Most People Can’t Handle."

3 Whose Head Is That?

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This specific scene is closer to emotional torture, than physical. Everything comes down to an NPC in Killer7 named Pedro Montana, who is is the reason his entire family is killed. What happened here was that Montana betrayed the game’s main antagonist Curtis Blackburn and his organ smuggling ring, so Blackburn wanted revenge. This led Blackburn to track down Montana’s family and murder each and everyone one of them. However, that’s not all — it is also revealed that Blackburn took advantage of Montana’s wife, Pamela. To further rub salt in the wound, when Montana asks about his daughter Blackburn throws her decapitated head at him. When Montana is nursing his daughter’s head in his arms, Blackburn then decides to shoot Montana multiple times in the back of the head to end his spree.

2 You’re Not My Wife!

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Another brutal scene that emphasizes that sometimes real torture isn't physical. In Gears of War 2, Dom finally reunites with his wife, except she's been mutated and is no longer the woman he fell in love with. Knowing what his wife would want, Dom ends her suffering and says his goodbyes in one felled swoop. This scene is tremendously painful, and even though her mercy killing is the exact opposite of physical torture, here we see Dom's life changed forever by the suffering of war. This is real torture; a moment that haunts you for the rest of your life.

1 If You Don’t Answer Me, I’ll Shove This Knife…..

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Let’s just say that Joel has already lost one daughter, and he doesn’t want to lose another girl. After Ellie has been kidnapped, Joel goes wild and would do anything to find information on where she is. This leads Joel to interrogate and torture a few hunters — and believe me it isn’t pretty at all. When a hunter refuses to give Joel any information about Ellie, Joel repeatedly stabs the hunter in the knee until he finally talks. What makes this scene even more intense is the fact that Joel shows the poor hunter a map and then gets the hunter to mark where Ellie is with the blood of the knife he just got stabbed with. Brutal.

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