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The 10 funniest video game glitches of all time

Laughter is the best medicine.

Making games can be a delicate process, as evidenced by all sorts of breaks, bugs, glitches, and more. We, as gamers, have gotten used to all sorts of patches and fixes that have become the norm when a new game comes out. As would be expected, there have been certain glitches that have resulted in some hilarious unintended consequences. In this article, we will be counting down our picks for the 10 funniest glitches in gaming.

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10.  Heavy Rain: “Shaun!”

Image via Belalipop Youtube

Heavy Rain was a game that had already suffered from a horribly written ending, but this glitch turned disappointment into hilarity. And what makes it even funnier is that this glitch could be reproduced with surprising consistency too. In essence, during the game’s final stretch, you only have the option to call out to Shaun a few times. But this particular glitch made it so that your character calls out for Shaun during the whole cutscene making the whole supposedly heartwrenching moment incredibly funny.

9. Mass Effect: Bobblehead Shep

Image via BiowareFollower Youtube

All games in the Mass Effect series suffered from numerous glitches and bugs that led to so much memeable content (looking at you Andromeda). Some of the notorious ones include frozen facial expressions and face meshes not rendering so that you see all the underlying head bits. For this list, we’ve picked the glitch in which Commander Shepard’s head would keep rotating during cutscenes, swiveling like a toy and even bobbing in all directions like it’s got a spring inside his neck. We know it’s sci-fi, but that’s definitely not the intended behavior for human anatomy.

8. Crysis: Land Sharks

Image via TheLulzRaptor Youtube

Crysis is a game famed for much in the gaming history outside of its gameplay or story. Most of it is reserved for its optimization, but there are some glitches it was known for as well. One in particular haunts players to this day — the Land Sharks of Crysis. You see, normally, sharks stick to water, being fish and all that. But in Crysis, there’s a glitch that would make them not only get out of the water to keep chasing you but also float about while doing so. These sharks were huge too. As a bonus, sometimes they would come back to life after you kill them and keep going after you.

7. Madden NFL ‘15: Tiny Titan

Image via EA Sports Madden NFL Youtube

Not many funny glitches get mainstream notoriety, but this one is an exception. For some weird reason, in Madden NFL ‘15 the Cleveland Browns player Christian Kirksey would glitch into being only about knee-tall. What’s even funnier is that he’d retain all the stats of a regular player, so seeing a diminutive player tackling and passing like it’s no big deal was instantly funny. But it doesn’t end there. The glitch was so well received, that it was ultimately left alone by the devs, and the player himself adopted it with aplomb. Go for the shins, little guy.

6. Red Dead Redemption: Animal People

Image via Remy Burnaugh Youtube

Apparently, it was perfectly normal to see cowboys flying in the Wild West. At least according to this famous Red Dead Redemption glitch. It made human NPCs adopt animal AI behavior, so you’d suddenly see humans running on all fours like cougars, flapping their arms and flying like birds, or bounding away like deer. The uncanniness of this glitch made it all the more humorous, and it seemed to appear with enough regularity that it was recorded and reported all the time.

5. Assassins Creed Unity: Faceless people

Image via MorningStar* Youtube

Since the game’s release, AC Unity had a slew of problems. One of the most widespread issues that the players were reporting involved the faces of characters simply disappearing. This left the horrifying view of their heads with just the hair, eyeballs, and mouths on full display. And while these scenes were like something out of a horror movie, they were still funny nonetheless. Especially when the characters would start speaking like nothing was amiss. This particular glitch would appear so often that Ubisoft had to issue a public apology for scaring the fans.

4. Mount & Blade Warband: Face in the Sky

Image via Jere Cullerton Youtube

The award for one of the weirdest and funniest glitches in gaming has to go to Mount & Blade’s sky texture glitch. You would be riding along, getting ready for another battle, when all of a sudden the normally blue sky would transform into a stretched-out face, looking down on you menacingly. If only it shouted “Show me what you’ve got” for a complete experience. This random glitch would appear from time to time as the game inexplicably swapped the standard sky texture for a random NPC face texture, making it a horrifying and funny experience in equal parts.

3. Battlefield 3: Worm Soldiers

Image via Andy Y Youtube

This Battlefield 3 glitch sadly (or luckily, depending on your point of view) didn’t make it past the Beta, but it still managed to become famous for just how weird it was. It made soldiers move in a wormlike manner, stretching their necks, arms, and torsos toward their destination and wiggling, then suddenly stopping and returning to normal once they got there. Thinking about it, this glitch could’ve provided a whole premise for a separate game mode, but sadly this funny occurrence was successfully patched out, though not before it was immortalized on the internet. 

2. Sims 4: Demon Babies

Image via Hecless Youtube

The Sims games are another franchise known for having some crazy glitches. There was one of the most famous and well-recorded glitches that occurred in the fourth Sims game. It involved your newborn’s models stretching and morphing into entities that belonged in an indie horror game. Their eyes would bulge out, limbs and fingers stretch and become claw-like, like proper little demon spawn. But the funniest thing about this glitch was how your Sims would just keep cooing at them like everything’s normal, their nonchalance adding to the hilarity of the situation.

1. Civilization: Nuclear Gandhi

Image via CivMemes

The glitch that surpassed gaming and became a meme almost everyone on the internet knows. Back when Sid Meier released the first Civ game, there was an aggression scale for each AI leader, ranging from 1 to 255. Obviously, Gandhi was 1. As you played, you could influence the scale. But for some reason, reducing Gandhi’s lower than 1 would flip him over to -255, which meant he’d become the most aggressive ruler in the game. And that meant only one thing — the nuclear option. This led to not only many laughs, but also to the whole franchise embracing the meme and leaning future installments of Gandhi toward favoring nuclear weapons. 

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Miljan Truc
I have been into gaming since the days of Sega Mega Drive and Amiga. Over the years in gaming, I have raided at a high level, completed rare achievements, coached other players, and written about games since 2016. Whether it’s been clicking heads; developing cities, colonies, and empires; or commanding parties of adventurers; I’ve always prided myself on being able to understand the underlying mechanics of games. Outside of gaming, I enjoy a variety of activities and hobbies, including playing with my pup Astra, working out, as well as crafting, painting, and leatherwork.