There are so many fantastic video game protagonists that it's hard to pick which is our favorite, but that's exactly what we did in this conversation. From Master Chief to Joel, here are our favorite video game protagonists.
This Slogging thread by Jose Hernandez, Limarc Ambalina, Jeffrey Harris, Jack Boreham, and Nicolas Ng occurred in slogging's official #gaming channel, and has been edited for readability.
Who's your favorite video game protagonist(s)?
That's a tough one, but I'm going to have to say Joel in The Last of Us because he isn't your typical protagonist.
Joel isn't a good person, he's just as bad, or even worse than any of the antagonists you fight in the game. But that impureness is what makes him a great character. He isn't a hero, he's just another guy trying to survive in the apocalypse.
The emotional growth Joel goes through in the first game is heartbreaking and powerful.
I’ve never played The Last of Us, but I’ve always heard praise for Joel as a character.
What do you guys think?
I guess you really can't go wrong with Geralt of Rivia from The Witcher series. That amazing voice by Doug Cockle. Geralt is a Witcher. He tries to do his job and stay on the path and avoid political squabbles.
However, he's constantly drawn into them. At heart, he's a good man who cares about his friends and loved ones trying to find his way, in a harsh, unforgiving world.
Mine's the Master Chief/John 117. He's a badass who's constantly finding a way to save humanity. I love his character because although he's in most of the primary halo series of games, little is known about him.
He's the demon according to the bad guys, and for a good reason too—a true legend and just so damn cool.
I gotta go with Arthur Morgan from Red Dead Redemption 2. I hadn't played the original and wasn't really expecting all that much from the story only to get blown away by the story arc he goes through.
His voice actor did a top-notch job throughout and the choices that I did get to make during the game felt like they made an impact, basically everything a good protagonist needs
Jack Boreham have you read any of the Halo books? My appreciation for the Chief is influenced by learning about his training, his bonds with his fellow Spartans and even his thoughts about Cortana.
Nicolas, are they any good? I've looked at them in bookstores and was tempted but I picked up Ender's Game instead which is an amazing book.
I wouldn't say that they're the greatest books ever made but they are well written and build on the Halo Universe. I've definitely enjoyed reading them, though.
From JRPGs, I'd say that Squall is a personal favorite because FF8 is my fav FF game.
But I have to say that Ramza in Final Fantasy Tactics isn't talked about enough. The growth of that character from the beginning of the game to the end of the game is immense.
He starts off as a spoiled noble who doesn't know the hardships of the commoner class and ends up fighting the noble rulers by the end of the game...some of which he was once very close to.
Nicolas, I haven't managed to. But that sounds super interesting. I might pick them up. I've been looking for a new video game-inspired book to pick up. Am I guessing these are on Amazon?
This might seem like a cop-out, but I've always been fond of silent protagonists such as the Doom Slayer. It's fun to imprint what you believe the character's personality is like without them ever speaking.