Villains: the people we love to hate. And sometimes pity. And sometimes riddle their corpses with clip after clip of ammunition just to witness ever amusing ragdoll effects. Villains can often make or break a narrative. Powerful, despicable foes can leave us with a thirst for revenge that keeps us engaged while poorly written walking clichés can kill a story before its even gotten off the ground. Theres no doubt that 2012 was an exciting year for gamers, a year of hotly anticipated sequels (Borderlands 2, Mass Effect 3, Max Payne 3) and quality debuts (The Walking Dead, Hotline Miami, Dishonored) alike, almost all of which featured baddies that were compelling on one way or another. Here are the top 9 video games villains from 2012. Spoilers for a number of AAA titles ahead, folks.
9. Vaas Montenegro (Far Cry 3)
Vaas is crazy. No, reallydudes insane. Hes also arguably the star of the show. Voiced and motion captured by talented actor Michael Mando, Montenegro is madman with a drug-addled brain whose hobbies include shooting people and slave trading. Far Cry 3 begins with you locked in a bamboo cell with your brother while Vaas mocks you both, bragging about how hes going to sell you, your brother, and your friends into slavery. In-game, Vaas is something spectacular to behold. Mandos voice acting and mannerisms bring a decently written bat-shit insane archetypical character to life. One of Vaass first lines is I like this phone. Its a nice f*cking phone. Not terrifying by itself, but Mando manages to capture the playful madness in his delivery, right down to the nonchalant little chuckle he gives as he stuffs your smartphone in his pocket. The potential for violent madness erupts moments later when your brother tries to talk through the duct tape over his mouth, and Vaas, slightly irritated, erupts Do you want me to slice you open like I did your friend?! The characters over-the-top insanity and dark humor also make him one of those villains that we love and abhor at the same time. A quality that Ubisoft Montreal probably realized, since the first trailer that we ever saw for Far Cry 3 wasnt explicitly about Jason, the protagonist, but instead featured Vaas and his now infamous Have I ever told you the definition of insanity? monologue. Thanks to Vaas, I know what its like to laugh and have chills at the same time. He may not have a deep characterization, but what he lacks in depth he more than makes up for with his memorable brand of violent lunacy.
Javy Gwaltney is an aspiring author, screenwriter, and essayist from South Carolina. He also likes to write about video games. You can find his articles on those at Bitmob and Whatculture!
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