Thursday, May 14, 2015

Best Boss Battles in Gaming History - Part Fourteen


  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D (3DS)
  • Rayman Legends (Multi)
  • Ratchet & Clank (PS2)
  • Kirby and the Rainbow Curse (Wii U)
  • Mario Party 10 (Wii U)

Welcome to the fourteenth installment of the long-running series of articles, Best Boss Battles in Gaming History. This is where you, me, and anyone else who wants to join in delve into some of the most climactic, enjoyable, entertaining, clever, and downright fun boss battles in the history of gaming. Whether it's a hardcore final boss or a creative take on a normal boss, these boss battles are some of the best gaming has to offer.

If you missed out on a previous entry of Best Boss Battles in Gaming History, look no further than these links:

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five
Part Six 
Part Seven
Part Eight
Part Nine
Part Ten
Part Eleven
Part Twelve
Part Thirteen

Catch Part Fourteen after the break due to spoilers and all!

Goht - The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D (3DS)

My favorite of the boss battles within The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D is Goht, who like every boss within the original Majora's Mask has altered tactics and strategies to defeat him. Goht is the boss of the Snowhead Temple, the second of four main dungeons within The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D. In a peculiar position when Link reaches him, Goht is encased in ice, a deep freeze of sorts. Perhaps after all of the trouble he's caused in the Goron Village and surrounding Snowhead area, he decided to hibernate.

Regardless, a shot from one of Link's Fire Arrow thaws the boss out, and it immediately makes haste, running around the oval arena that serves as the battlefield. Link must change into a Goron to make chase. Meanwhile, Goht unleashes boulders, electrical charges, and drops stalactites onto the ground to trip up his pursuer.

As Goron Link, you have two strategies you can utilize. One is to keep charging into Goht's legs with the Goron spin maneuver. The other is to use the bumps of the makeshift racetrack as ramps to catapult into the air and drop down on Goht's back to damage him even harder. When enough punishment has been taken, Goht will crash to the ground, which is the big change to the battle from the N64 original. In the 3DS version, Goht falls to the ground, allowing Link to unload a series of Fire Arrows into the beast's weak point, a bulging eye on its back. In the original, you had to keep colliding into Goht until he was defeated. In this remake, when enough damage has been given to his eye, Goht returns to his feet, and once again runs around the arena for Goron Link to chase him.

Goht is one of more action-packed and better battles within Majora's Mask, and it's made even greater with the 3DS version released earlier this year. What do you think-- is there a better boss of the original four than Goht to you?

Luchador - Rayman Legends (Multi)

Welcome to the fight of the century! It's Rayman versus Luchador for the Global Luchador Federation belt! Okay, it might just be a battle for Rayman's own survival, but things seem pretty official here, what, with the crowd in the background, the Luchador posing for his adoring fans, and the bell ringer making note of the each individual round.

Round one is simple enough. Luchador will hold his open palm over a part of the platform surrounded by lava that Rayman rests on. When his palm hits the platform, Rayman is sent flying into the air. After some interference by some enemies, a bounce pad shows up, the way to the top of Luchador's head, where all Rayman needs to do is slam into the ground (i.e. Luchador's head) to do some damage.

Round two brings differently elevated platforms into the picture, and Luchador's fists more closely following Rayman's movement. After a while, Luchador's fist will slam into one of the platforms, removing it from the equation. Another blue jump pad will eventually come into play, allowing Rayman to once again slam into the top of Luchador's head.

Round three completely does away with platforms, having Luchador summon a giant wind tunnel, allowing Rayman free flight. However, there is the matter of all of those pesky fireballs that rise up from the lava to avoid. Even Luchador's hand comes in as something for Rayman to evade while he's hovering along the inside of the wind tunnel. A jump pad enters the arena once more, giving Rayman the opportunity for one last attack on the Luchador, giving him the KO he so richly deserves.

Rayman is a series known for its bizarre, wacky comedic moments, and this battle succeeds in not only being funny but also fun to play.

Chairman Drek - Ratchet & Clank (PS2)

Make that Supreme Executive Chairman Drek! The final boss of the original Ratchet & Clank is quite the ultimate showdown. On one side you have a team that started off rocky but is now more united than every before. On the other, you have a powerful despot wanting to destroy the balance of the universe by stealing parts of planets to create his own nightmarish vision of a world.

The first part of the final battle has two evenly sized opponents beating one another up. You have a huge Clank with Ratchet on his back (a total opposite of how the usual setup is), and you have Chairman Drek inside his own mechanized monstrosity. After some good punches by Clank, Drek uses a ray to revert Clank back to normal size, much to the chagrin of players and the heroic duo.

What follows is a series of battles aboard floating islands that has Drek firing off a barrage of missiles that must be avoided, as well as large bombs that produce shockwaves upon hitting the ground. Each time Drek has had enough abuse for the time being, he fires a laser that destroys the current island that the battle was waged on. This means Ratchet and Clank must scurry and retreat off the island via the Swingshot to safely swing to the next battlefield.

The final island where the battle rages on is much more stable. Drek will occasionally hit a button to make the planet set to detonate. Only by Ratchet slamming another button will the countdown stop, temporarily saving the planet from certain doom. Meanwhile, Drek's mech unloads enemies for Ratchet and Clank to contend with, along with the standard missiles, bombs, and accompanying shockwaves. When Chairman Drek's mech's health reaches zero, he gets launched into space, facing humiliation and defeat from the unlikeliest of heroes.

Claycia - Kirby and the Rainbow Curse (Wii U)

The penultimate boss battle within Kirby and the Rainbow Curse (or as those in PAL territories know it as the recently released Kirby and the Rainbow Paintbrush), Claycia is yet another boss battle within the game that uses the mechanics of the game in a remarkable fashion.

To do damage to Claycia, what Kirby must do is wait for the spikes on the orbs that the boss unleashes to retract, thus allowing Kirby to spin into them, hitting them back into Claycia. This causes her to enter a dazed state and fall to the ground where Kirby can continuously run into her to cause damage until Claycia regain consciousness.

In between these exchanges, Kirby and the player must become a bit creative with how they dodge Claycia's offensive advances. One attack has Claycia summoning electrical nodes on the top of the screen that fire laser charges to the ground below. To dodge this attack, the player must draw rainbow lines to act as a force field as Kirby rolls around on the ground. Other attacks include having cannons summoned on the ceiling that also require the player to destroy their shots by drawing rainbow lines, as well as hands that track Kirby's movements before they come out of the walls in hopes of pounding Kirby to a pulp.

Claycia is an innovative boss battle within an innovative 2D adventure starring everyone's favorite pink puffball. It is for these reasons that I list the penultimate boss battle within Kirby and the Rainbow Curse on this list of the best boss battles in gaming history.

Bowser - Mario Party 10 (Wii U)

Like any boss battle in Mario Party 10, you're not just battling against the boss, in this case Bowser inside a tank that can turn and cover all 360 degrees around it, you're competing against the other three players. The boss battle mini-game Bowser's Tank Terror has you and three other opponents in miniature tanks, firing at Bowser to score points. Occasionally, Super Mushrooms float inside bubbles and pop open, allowing one of the players to grab it, growing in size and making their shots on Bowser double in points with each successful hit. Taking damage means reverting back to normal size.

In the first form, that is before Bowser's health bar reaches half empty, Bowser shoots out spiked balls from his main cannon, charges at players with his tank, and spins in a circle, unleashing multiple trails of fire that need to be avoided.

When Bowser's health drops to halfway, his tank gets destroyed, and he helplessly falls into the lava behind him. With a quick burst of magic, Bowser sheds his skin and grows to enormous size, revealing himself in Dry Bowser form. Now, Dry Bowser, the boss shoots large intermittent fireballs at players, chucks a huge boomerang-style bone at players, and once every so often leaps to the background where he blasts fireballs into the sky, which soon fall to the platform where the players' tanks are.

The fact that this battle comes in two parts and that it isn't anywhere near as luck-heavy as the Bowser battle in Mario Party 9 makes it a great contender for an excellent boss battle. Even party games can have awesome boss fights and Mario Party 10's Bowser's Tank Terror shows us this splendidly.

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