This post will contain spoilers for the ending of Origins.
I think my feelings on the Origins ending were clearly established earlier, but I've spend a good amount of time looking at the ending over and over again, and you'll be pleased to hear I have slightly less malicious feelings towards this ending now. That is, however, if what I have come up with is exactly what Treyarch were implying, or they just used this ending as a 'Get Out of Crap Story Territory Free Card'.
When I first watched the ending, like most people, I was up in arms. Not only did they render the entire story they have built up completely pointless, but they also did it in an exceptionally lazy way. They brought out that age-old twist, it was all imaginary.
However, as I watched it over a few times, I noticed a couple of things. The first thing was that near the end you can clearly see the Green Run crew tucked away under a cupboard or something. Not a big thing, but this clearly shows they were controlling the events of the Green Run group too. This is further supported by the appearance of the Turbine mannequin in the background, and the appearance of a zombie from Buried.
Then I started racking my brains. It's clearly stated that Eddie (Who is highly likely to be Richtofen, although him holding a doll of his future self sort of confuses that.) will get to be in control tomorrow. This, I believe, is representative of the switch between the crews.
There are also clearly references to the maps, such as the Ascension rocket, a Mob of the Dead zombie and what I believe to be a movie poster for Call/Mob of the Dead. I think MotD is the more likely option, considering that the guy is in a suit on the poster, and it's possible the film was released in the 30s (this cutscene clearly taking place during WW2).
The film could also be what made Sam and Eddie fans of zombies, and the events of Mob of the Dead are just a film that they had seen. This would also give MoTD more relevance in the story, as it seemed even more out of the place the first time I saw the ending.
However, this seems to make CoTD more distant from the story, because how would two WW2-era German (presumably, even though they sounds like suburban Americans) kids know about five random modern celebrities. MoTD makes sense because it's four characters who just happen to be voiced by celebrities. In CoTD, the voice artists are playing themselves.
But then, I thought back to Kino der Toten. The room in this cutscene is clearly the same room as the two that you are randomly teleported to. But with some slight diferences. In this cutscene, Sam seems to have a single bed in the corner, whereas the room in Kino has a double bed in the centre of the wall. The room is also vastly more decorated in th ending cutscene appearance. Then, however, I remembered a killer part of that room, the Der Riese model with dolls of the four characters.
If this was an intentionally placed hint that the storyline was actually all imagined by Sam and Eddie, then Treyarch has pulled one of the best examples of long-term foreshadowing I've seen in a video game series. If not, then screw you Treyarch for making me compliment you.
The final lines also stood out to me on the following watches, and it can definitely be considered the WHAM point of this cutscene.
- Eddie: I wish the heroes in our stories were real, Sam.
- Sam: I know what you mean, but we will make everything okay. My dad says he has a plan.
Now, if what they are implying is that all of the story that Sam and Eddie had made up will come true because Maxis actually does exactly what they come up with, that's clearly stupid. There are several reasons why that is stupid. The going down to the basement thing I thought was more perculiar than it actually was, but it seems to me that it's simply just a shelter, because the air raid siren implies a bombing was taking place.
Oh, and speaking of the bombing, I'm gonna dip into some completely abstract theorising. You've been warned.
Unless all of this was down to Treyarch being lazy, it seems to me that they are not in Germany at all. Maxis' accent clearly shows he is German, but neither Samantha or Eddie have even vaguely German accents. Also, none of the posters or writing in the room is in German.
I'll stop that now.
So yes, after about two hours of watching this cutscene on loop, I think I dislike it slightly less. Of course, we have only scene the cutscene, and not the context in which the cutscene plays. It could all change when someone actually finishes it properly.
That's all from me. Goodcry.
TL;DR The ending reveal isn't quite as crap as first suspected.