These Video Game Characters Deserve Their Own Wing In Arkham Asylum
The theory goes that everyone is crazy on some level. Everybody has some psychological issues but only the really messed up ones aren’t considered sound of mind. Then you get the ridiculously disturbed people who kill in the name of Pikachu or the Great Flying Spaghetti. Well, video game characters are people too, or at least that’s what the voices in my head convinced me of after a lengthy and laborious debate that left me with a really bad headache. So surely they’re no different from the rest of us when it comes to being a bit batty.
Because it takes one to know one, we at eGamer have put together a list of video game characters that do such a good job of hiding their illnesses, you’d think they were pathological or something. We’re not talking about characters that are obviously disturbed here, no we’re talking about the ones that appear pretty normal on the outside. So let’s take a look at some of those killers next-door, the psychopaths in disguise, the Azhar’s if you will.
Let’s roll, not literally though because we’re not rocks unless you believe you are in which case that’s just fine.
Nathan Drake (Uncharted)
Uncharted will probably go down as one the best series’ the PS3 ever had, such great gameplay, phenomenally well-crafted narrative experiences which defined the term ‘cinematic gameplay experience’ and kick-ass visuals to boot. The games were polished to such a high shine that you could see your reflection but pick away at that glossy veneer and protagonist Nathan Drake is quite cracked up.
The Diagnosis: Patient constantly finds himself in life-threatening situations while on globe-trekking escapades to find some elusive and hidden treasure. This is evident of the sort of reckless abandon associated with suicidal individuals, however Mr Drake is somewhat different. He appears to have the need to go out as a hero thus his obsession with embarking on impossible missions (not to be confused with Tom Cruise and his missions which are impossible). The patient also displays abandonment issues which explains his need to take up the companionship of an older gentleman by the name of Victor Sullivan, either that or he’s holding in a great amount of repressed homosexuality.
It gets a bit worse though when one considers the fact that Mr Drake finds himself being attacked by a multicultural group of people from many races, religions and ethnicities (oh wait, that’s Ubisoft’s schtick but no matter) all of whom are never American somehow. This clearly points to a perversely bigoted xenophobia exhibited by the patient. He appears to feel the need to defend the Fatherland against any and all who do not fit his image of what it is to be American i.e. Caucasian.
The Prince (Prince of Persia)
Prince of Persia is arguably the greatest trilogy of games to ever exist and part of this is that each game focused on a different facet whether it be combat or storytelling or platforming. That said, this diversity also brought about a few varied iterations of the nameless Prince for whom the games are named (I’m not going to point out what I did there but I will draw your attention to it). Diagnosing him isn’t any easier though.
The Diagnosis: The patient seems to be constantly stuck in the past, unable to move on with his life. This often presents itself in middle-aged men, often retired sportsmen, who simply cannot accept the fact that they are aging and that their glory days are behind them. ‘The Prince’ is always obsessing over his events of the past and mulling over the mistakes he’s made. He propagates fantastically grand delusions in which he is the hero fighting off hoards of creatures in order to fuel his need for acceptance from his father. Part of his delusion is a fixation with water, which he believes to be a powerful elixir capable of healing any injury. We also believe that he suffers from dissociative multiple personality disorder whereby he has several, broadly similar personas but each has a very different personality. We have only observed three of them thus far and while the first appears normal, the second is best described as a darker, more violent version of the first albeit far more angry thus his favouring of heavy rock music. The third is even stranger as it displays multiple personalities within one of the personalities of someone suffering from a multiple personality disorder.
After much coaxing and piecing together bits of information that were corroborated by all of ‘the Prince’s’ personas, we were able to determine his true identity and we believe that Mr Gyllenhaal, that’s his real name, suffered a mental trauma some years ago which resulted in him receding into personas which gave him not only a sense of security but also a sense of purpose. We tracked down Mr Gyllenhaal’s medical records and found that as a teenager he underwent psychiatric treatment after suffering from delusional episodes of paranoia in which he thought he was being coerced into doing vandalous acts by a large rabbit.
Cloud Strife (Final Fantasy)
Cloud Strife is not only one of the best loved Final Fantasy characters but also the name which one of our regular commentors goes by, don’t confuse them though because shit is about to get so real you’ll smell it. Cloud first appeared in the Final Fantasy VII and raised the bar for RPG heroes with his depth of character. At this point, anyone familiar with the character will be wanting to raise a very valid point against his inclusion on the list and that’s the fact that Cloud Strife is reputed for being one of the first ‘unreliable narrators’ due to his grandiose delusions and overall psychological issues.
Why include him on a list of closet crazies when everybody knows he’s loony? Well, because this list needed a bit more diversity of the Jap variety and despite his well-documented psychosis, there are a few issues which have remarkably been overlooked for the past 15 years.
The Diagnosis: Mr Strife is clearly suffering from a severe inferiority complex thus his obsession with carrying a ludicrously oversized blade which he of course uses as a proxy for his inadequate penis. The patient also exhibits classic signs of what the field experts refer to as a ‘needy attention-seeker’. His overdone hair, and eye-catching name have been part of his persona in an attempt to not only be accepted by people but also to be loved. This stems from possibly being neglected as a child or ostracised by his peers as a boy. It’s difficult to tell really since he remembers so little about his past but perhaps this points to a drinking problem brought on by his inability to fit into society.
Gordon Freeman (Half-Life)
Gordon Freeman is the star of Half Life and it’s unlikely you’ll be seeing him in a new game anytime soon; let’s just throw that delusion out of the window right now. He’s best known for brandishing a crowbar and being utterly mute which is perhaps an outward manifestation of just how deep his mental troubles run. The Half-Life series is regarded as both one of the best to ever exist as well as one of the greatest fodder for trolling gamers to the point of foamy rage.
The Diagnosis: Gordon appears very intelligent and should considering his degree in Theoretical Physics. His speechlessness suggests a variety of autism akin to the infamous Rainman. This theory is further purported by his acceptance of repeatedly doing what effectively constitutes manual labour despite his significantly superior intellect. While it is difficult to infer much from Gordon without him actually speaking, he does communicate with hand gestures and head movements and from this interaction it was possible to deduce that Gordon is aware of the sexual relationship that exists but is not self-aware enough to realise that he is capable of being a part of this and we can thus conclude that Mr Freeman is asexual although this is not by choice as with some inhuman robots but rather a product of his affliction.
It is unclear what has happened to Gordon since his last assessment but rumours suggest that he believes himself to be an African-American actor and that he has learnt to speak with a magnificent voice. Other rumours would have us believe that Mr Freeman believes himself to be God. It is unlikely that any of the rumours are true but our prayers are with Gordon, he is such an innocent soul, and we do hope to hear from him soon.
Kirby is one of Nintendo’s best loved characters and like many of them, has endured since the Gameboy days. He is an energetic, pink ball of cutesy happiness but beneath lies perhaps the most twisted sociopath on this list.
The Diagnosis: Kirby is always full of smiles and generally brightens up any room with his presence, until his disease kicks in that is. Clearly apparent is an eating disorder (not necessarily cannibalism) whereby he consumes random passers-by that he comes into contact with and the only reason they might attack him in the first place is that he is infamous throughout the land for his compulsive consumption and pathological demeanour. He will occasionally regurgitate these innocents and injure others in doing so which not only points to a disregard for life but also a complete lack of empathy or feeling towards others. Most of the time though, he will devour them in one go which not only points to some primal instinct for survival but also a severe depression which manifests in his need to eat furiously and in great volumes. After consuming his poor victims, Kirby takes on their persona and traits; obviously indicative of an identity crisis and his burning desire to define himself but also provide meaning to his life.
Kirby regularly goes on killing sprees, prompted only by his psychotic hallucinations and often even just the stuff of his dreams. He’ll use whatever he has at his disposal whether it be spikes, a boomerang, a sword, lightning, fire anything really to inflict havoc and death upon the land, all with a happy-go-lucky smile upon his face. Kirby is the textbook definition of a sociopath. Someone who is ill at ease in society but who tries so hard to fit in that you wouldn’t even notice his insanity behind the too-nice/eager to please attitude until he’s looking at you with murder in his eyes. In short, this is one psychotic motherfucker. No literally, give that cutesy cream-puff a chance and he will rape your mother after killing you and the rest of your family.
These are just some of the sincerely disturbed video game characters out there and there many more lurking in your pile of games but some of them hide it extremely well. Think carefully the next you say that you wish you were this character or that character because they might be more unbalanced than you might like.
I’m not suggesting you go all Caveshen and overthink everything but take this as a warning that you never know who might be a serial killer in disguise or a perverted sociopath. Then again, perhaps I’m making you all a bit paranoid. On second thought, I shouldn’t listen to that other voice in my head and second-guess myself. Alright, I’ve got it. In conclusion just remember that nothing is true and everything is permitted. Wait, aww screw it that’s a decent enough way to wrap this sideshow up.