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There's hardly a longer-standing tradition in video gaming than the boss. You know how it works--you plow through wave after wave of lesser enemies, cutting them down with your sword or mowing through them with your machine gun, until you finally reach the big bad dude at the end of the level. Bosses come in all shapes and sizes, but they're always a lot harder to kill than the typical enemy (well, almost always). Boss battles are often the most interesting--and most frustrating--part of any game that involves some kind of combat.

GameSpot Poll
In your opinion, what makes a good boss?
Style and charisma
Insane difficulty
Imaginative mechanics
All of the above

There's a lot of room for variation in the design and implementation of your typical video game boss character, and that's why we decided to put together this edition of the TenSpot, which looks at our 10 most memorable boss fights. The bosses here qualify as memorable by excelling in a number of categories; difficulty, personality, and innovative fight mechanics all come into play. So we're not saying these are the 10 hardest bosses or the 10 most stylish ones--just the 10 we remember the most.

And so we're clear, the term "boss fights" is used loosely in this article--you might argue that you don't even have to fight a couple of the bosses named herein. But a boss is a boss, regardless of how you vanquish it, and we think these 10 are as memorable as any in gaming. So without further ado, read ahead for our favorite video game boss encounters. As always, you can direct feedback through e-mail, and at the end of the article you'll have a chance to vote on your favorite bosses for a future reader-submitted version of the TenSpot.

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