Remember that time when videogames barely had any plot or narrative? That time when they never surpassed the root of their label simple games on video? Yep, neither can I fortunately, and I bet you know exactly where I am going with this. Games like Pong and Pac-man stormed the 70s and 80s respectively, but they lacked a compelling story. As the 90s rolled on, videogames were shaping into an entertainment form that featured characters with personal agendas whether good or evil. In other words, the narrative differences between videogames and any other audiovisual entertainment narrowed down. Who can forget the compelling stories in games like Pokémon Red & Blue and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time? The heros journey evolved into a central focus in most videogame narratives after this point. As technology grew faster and faster, videogames developed at an exponential rate. From the 00s until now marks what I like to call the Gaming Renaissance, since videogames slowly morphed into a blend of pictorial, literary, instrumental, physical, and character driven masterpieces that are now on the brink of achieving artistic status. Although there are predecessors, this Renaissance period has endowed us with some game characters with souls. These characters earned their right to be either loved or hated for sharing their ideals and goals with the gamer. More times than not, though, the villain compels the gamer more than the hero, since we have to grasp the gravity of our mission at one point or the other. The villain represents the reason for which we have taken on this journey to defeat him. How many times have you played a character that has an entire biography, yet no actual character development as the story well developed? He may be the protagonist, but many times the main character is the gamer himself/herself rather than the character in this fictional world. There are certainly exceptions, such as Nathan Drake in Uncharted, but it has yet to be a renowned feature in games. Therefore, a great villain will always be memorable. That is why the villain has become more stimulating in games than in films or television programs during this Renaissance. This article will analyze seven features that can guarantee a memorable gaming villain. However, it must be noted that every trait is not necessarily applied to every great villain. Keep this in mind, since it will make sense as you read along. In addition, be warned that spoilers lie ahead!
I'm currently enrolled in the Film Studies program at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. If you haven't guessed by now, movies and media are as a big of a passion for me as they are for you and would love to hear what you've gotta say as well!