Atomic Heart Best Endings - All Endings Explained

Sometimes you finish a game and still don’t get what exactly happened.

Usually, the ending of a game gives you all the answers. But that's not always the case. Some games leave you with more questions than answers.

This isn't to say that they're bad. In my opinion, Atomic Heart leaves a lot of breadcrumbs. And it wants the players to figure out the meaning. But it gives you a lot more than you need, so it can be a little confusing.

Now before I get into the explanations, let's talk about the number of endings. The game lets you pick between two. And they both go down completely different paths.

I'll be honest here. They both feel rushed and half-baked, and the devs probably didn’t get enough time to polish them. Still, there's plenty to interpret, and I'm here to answer whatever questions you might have. 


2. The ‘Leave’ Ending

So let’s talk about the first of the two possible endings. This one is the shorter one, and easier to understand. You have the build-up to this point, where Granny Zina and CHAR-les are both imploring P-3 to kill Sechenov and put an end to all his evil.

What Happens

Except, P-3 doesn’t. Instead, he considers two lines of thought. The first is that Sechenov is a national hero and genius, so he decides to trust his judgment.

More importantly, he calls CHAR-les out on a bunch of things. For all the lies he told him, the ways he has manipulated him. 

He even points out the biggest inconsistency in their argument. CHAR-les is telling him that Sechenov is sending him to Limbo and using his body to kill his enemies. Except, if he was doing that, why wasn’t he killing Granny Zina right now?

After pointing out the lies, P-3 decides that he has had enough. He ends it all by pulling CHAR-les out of his glove. The ending slide shows us that P-3 disappears. Sechenov doesn’t seem to make a big deal out of this, and we never find out what happens with Kollectiv 2.0.

The Meaning

The endings are where the game is closest to the original Bioshock. (Not counting the scene under the Lighthouse.) Thematically, both games play with themes of being controlled, and not too subtly. 

P-3 has been manipulated the entire time. First with the false memories and the brain implant (Voskhod.) Then with the truth behind the robots and Kollectiv. And finally, all the information that CHAR-les has been feeding him.

In this ending, he finally sees through all of that. And decides that enough is enough. He is done being controlled. He breaks off the shackles and walks away.


While this is technically the ‘good ending,’ I’m not a big fan of it. In the first place, P-3 being able to see through the lies seems difficult to believe. This guy has been manipulated his whole life and he’s quite malleable.

On top of that, it skips over the resolution. Granted, the other one doesn’t give us too much. But we get a glimpse of the truth that this ending denies us.

How To Get It:

  • This one’s easy. When Granny Zina asks you to kill Sechenov, you just have to select Option 1. Enjoy the cutscene!

1. The ‘Fight’ Ending

Now, we have the true ending. And I’m confident that this is canon. Regardless of how well it does its job, it tries to sum up everything. This branches off from the same place, except this time P-3 decides to kill Sechenov. 

What Happens

A lot of it is gameplay and boss fights, so I’ll keep that part short. P-3 confronts Sechenov and he has to fight the twins. Two things to note here. 

First, Sechenov claims that CHAR-les is the one manipulating P-3. Hard to believe for our hero as he doesn’t trust Sechenov anymore. P-3 is the first to escalate, and Sechenov orders the twins to protect him. 

He does seem open to talk it out. But only if P-3 gets rid of CHAR-les first. And to be fair, he doesn’t make it easy to trust him. 

The second is the voice of Katya. P-3 keeps hearing her when he’s fighting the twins. She asks him to set her free, and then find her afterwards. Cryptic, but it’s definitely setting something up.

After the fight, P-3 shoots Sechenov and that’s when the truth comes out. CHAR-les zaps P-3 and merges with the data bank, becoming a polymer monster. He kills Sechenov, destroys the alpha connector and delivers his villain monologue.

And he does this while… petting a weird cat? The screen fades out and we see a slide explaining what happens afterwards. Seems like CHAR-les absorbed Sechenov’s body before disappearing. There are no other mentions, so we don’t exactly know what he is doing now.

P-3 isn’t mentioned either, but we actually have a good idea. The next scene gives us quite the hint. 

The final scene shows us that P-3 is in Limbo. He hears the voice of Katya, his wife. And when he looks up, he sees two wedding rings, and one of the twins floating towards him. They reach towards each other, and the game ends after they grasp one another’s hand.

The Meaning

There is a lot to unpack here! Buckle up, as I’m about to explain my take on everything. Most of it is supported by in-game material. The cases where it isn’t, I’ll tell you that it’s my interpretation.

It’s obvious that CHAR-les is the real big-bad of this game. From the start, he has been feeding information to P-3. You might remember different conversations where he hints that P-3 should question what he’s been told.

His goals still aren’t clear, but they’re definitely diabolical. This part is completely my take. It seems like CHAR-les believes the next phase of humanity’s evolution is as a collective organism. With him leading the way. 

He calls himself the next phase of human evolution, and his plans involve using Kollectiv 2.0. The game has already told us that it can send other people to Limbo and control their bodies.

The neuro-polymer form that CHAR-les takes is one that stores data. And after consuming Sechenov, he has access to all his knowledge. And he destroyed the alpha collector, meaning no one will be able to change the settings anymore.

And what about the white fluffy thing? We’ve seen these before, but only when P-3 is in Limbo. He has to follow one, and he himself is one (based on how his arms look). And, well, there’s this really weird video from the early concept days… So, here’s my interpretation. 

The fluffy creature represents human minds when they’re trapped. Kinda cute and playful. Cat-like. CHAR-les is petting this creature because to him, we’re all just childlike. Fluffy. Dumb animals that need his guidance to move forward.

The final scene seems to imply that Katya’s consciousness was indeed saved. Somehow. Seems like destroying the twins allowed her consciousness to merge.

The twins are named Left and Right. While there are many interpretations, I think the one that’s most accurate is in terms of brain hemispheres. And we do know that they were imprinted with the different sides of Katya’s brain, the only thing they could save.


This is a very bleak ending where everything goes bad. The guy lying wins. Sechenov explains things but only after it’s too late. And P-3 is trapped in Limbo.

But that’s why I think this is the best ending. The game is about P-3 being controlled and manipulated, and it seems fitting that it ends like that as well. 

And let’s not forget that it’s not all bad. In the end, we see P-3 is reunited with his wife. And since they’re both in Limbo we know they’re alive, in a way. 

Another thing to note is P-3’s arms. Until the final scene, his hands are fluffy. But when he grasps Katya’s hand, it’s his own hand. This might signify that he’s actually beginning to break free from the chains of control.

So we have two main characters. And somewhere in the waters, there are two beta connectors… It’s pretty obviously a setup for a sequel, one which I’d be excited to play. Seeing what CHAR-les does with Kollectiv and how the main characters get out of Limbo. Or how they fail.

How To Get It:

  • The first step is the same as last time. Select Option 2 when you’re asked to kill Sechenov.
  • You’ll have to go through two boss battles. First, you’ll have to beat Left.
  • After you beat her, you’ll have to take on both Twins!
  • Once they’re both defeated, the ending cutscene will play. Don’t forget to watch all of it!


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A prolific and published author with a fervor for gaming, I have decided to dedicate myself to these two bring in a way that inspire passion and desires to learn and explore in others.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Dishonored
Top 3 Favorite Games:The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Dragonborn, Assassin's Creed 2 , Dishonored

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