Every video game is only as good as it’s villain.
No matter the genre or the gameplay, each game has a villain or antagonist. This is so prominent that Disney decided to make a movie dedicated to humanizing the bad guys in emotional fashion.
Still, in each of our favorite games, there is a villain that sets us out on the quest in the first place. These villains range from individual antagonist to full-blown organizations. Some games even have multiple ones.
So which villain is your favorite in gaming?
In the early days of gaming, villains were a lot more clear cut. Jumpman needed to save Pauline from the evil clutches of Donkey Kong while Pac-Man needed to dodge those ghosts in order to eat all the dots. As is the case in the latter example, sometimes villains have no clear motive.
Fast forward to modern games where the villain has developed to a more complicated being. We learn of their motives and why they do what they do. This humanization allows the villain to be more impactful.
Personally, I prefer villains that are straight up evil. One of my favorite villains in TV is Gus Fring in Breaking Bad. Fring is menacing and foreboding all while not ever saying much.
Those are the types of villains I prefer. The ones who instill fear the second you say their name or see them.
Sephiroth from Final Fantasy VII was this for me especially as we found out his connection with Jenova. Every time he showed up, I got nervous.
Another one that was more goofy than intimidating was Ghirahim from The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. While his flair for the dramatics often shined more than his intimidation, Ghirahim always caused problems for Link throughout the game. While I really liked him, I was never happy to see him show up because I knew a fight was imminent.
Another common villain in video games is an organization. This could be Team Rocket from the Pokémon franchise. The Shinra Corporation from Final Fantasy VII and the space pirates from the Metroid series are all great examples.
We also can’t forget about some of the most iconic villains including Dr. Robotnik from Sonic the Hedgehog; Bowser from Super Mario Bros.; Ganondorf from The Legend of Zelda. There are so many that date back a long time and yet they are still relevant today.
While gameplay often reigns supreme when it comes to video games, a good villain can definitely add to that. Without one, there’s no purpose or challenge to overcome.
So which villain in gaming is your favorite? What makes a great villain to you? Let us know in the comments below or by heading over to our Discord channel to join the conversation.
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The Boss Rush Podcast is the flagship podcast of Boss Rush Media and The Boss Rush Network. Each week, Corey, LeRon, Stephanie, Edward, and their friends from around the internet come together to talk their week in games, entertainment, and more while also bringing topics for conversation, answer listener and community questions, and cover major news and events happening in the video game industry. Watch The Boss Rush Podcast live on Wednesday Nights on Twitch at 8:30 p.m. ET / 5:30 p.m. PT or on Monday mornings at 7 a.m. ET on YouTube and podcast services everywhere. Thanks for listening! You can also get this episode one week early on Patreon.
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