Sunday, 10 Dec 2023

The Best Video Game Characters of 2019

2019 has blessed us with some downright spectacular characters, from an annoying goose to incredible motion capture performances in games like Controlsee dealControl – PlayStation 4$29.88on Amazon and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Now, as the year winds down the IGN Staff has come together to share their favorite video game characters of 2019 (in no particular order).Click through the gallery below or scroll down further to see the entire list.The Best Video Game Characters of 2019

Todd – Bloodstained: Ritual of The Night

Todd is a cursed barber that has to give 666 unique haircuts to whomever is dumb enough to wander into a haunted inter-dimensional castle, in order to break the curse and be free to… give haircuts somewhere else, presumably? Despite all this, he’s got a great attitude and really takes pride in his work, which you gotta appreciate, all things considered.

– Jeremy Azevedo

The Ape – Ape Out

Okay, I know what you’re thinking…what’s so special about an ape? Listen up. If you’re looking for one of the best beat ‘em ups of 2019, you owe it to yourself to check out Ape Out. There’s something special about taking a nameless ape on a jazz-fueled power fantasy.LoadingFlinging police officers out of 30-story windows and using them as shields against their own gunfire as you navigate the labyrinthian layouts and try to escape never is more entertaining than it has any right to be.

– Matthew Adler

Cuno – Disco Elysium

Cuno is the greatest NPC to ever appear in any video game, ever. Beneath his rude and willfully ignorant demeanor lies… and even ruder and MORE ignorant demeanor. Will you stoop to his level, or try and scare him straight? Regardless of what you choose, Cuno will tell everyone that the decision was HIS idea, pig.

Jeremy Azevedo

Ahti, the Janitor – Control

“Ahti the Janitor is a friendly face in my book.” One of the most ominous, cryptic, and charming characters. Ahti speaks in English but uses a lot of Finnish idioms, causing a lot of what he means to get scrambled in translation in a way that manages to intrigue instead of isolate.

Plus, he has great taste in music and his cassette player leads you through the Astral Maze which is one of the best gaming moments in 2019.

– Janet Garcia

Vicar Max – The Outer Worlds

This conflicted character is half-jailbird/half-”cool youth pastor” and is easily the most complex character in the Outer Worlds with the best personal side quest by far.
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVED Parvati too, but Vicar Max won me over with his character arc, realistic intellectual flexibility and genuinely caustic wit throughout.

– Jeremy Azevedo

Ada – The Outer Worlds

Ada is an AI that runs the starship Unreliable — and Ada has few tools in its belt to stop you from jacking said ship. So it flashes some lights and says you are about to be ejected into space (the ship is safely grounded on a planet). Subterfuge seems to be a core function of Ada, as it insists on playing out the lie that you are indeed Captain Hawthorne, the late previous captain of the Unreliable.

Ada is as charming as it is deceptive, with a projected face cycling through a delightful set of expressions from puzzled to miffed on a 2D, retro projection on a screen that is straight out of a 1980s “futuristic” sci-fi movie.

– Samuel Claiborn

Mr. X/Tyrant – Resident Evil 2

It’s surprising that, in a world full of zombies, mutants and horrifying inside-out spider-men, one of the most terrifying sounds you can hear is footsteps. Or, perhaps more accurately, bootclomps.25 Scariest Games of This GenerationMassive and impassive – which could totally be part of his WWE intro (though he's already got some great theme music) – Mr X was an ever-present threat, one that was masterfully executed by the development team to both subvert our expectations of the story but still fuel that classic RE2 nostalgia. It was clear he would be an unforgettable part of the remake, right from the moment he smashed his way through those RPD walls and into our hearts. Our very, very terrified hearts.

– Jon Ryan

FL4K – Borderlands 3

FL4K is most everyone’s favorite new Vault Hunter in Borderlands 3, a beastmaster that dresses like Billie Eilish uses long-range weapons and hostile pets to hunt the most dangerous game: Man Legendary Loot. He’s got some of the most broken builds, the best outfits and the most sarcastic offhand comments of all the new hunters.

– Jeremy Azevedo

Dr. Casper Darling – Control

A scientist with rockstar energy, Dr. Casper Darling is one of Control’s primary storytellers and he does it with flair, despite being confined to FMV recordings Jesse comes across during her journey.LoadingWhile the Federal Bureau of Control gives you plenty to be suspicious about, nothing could make me distrust or dislike Dr. Darling. Oops! He’s impossible not to love, especially once you discover his hidden talents.

– Janet Garcia

Parvati Holcomb – The Outer Worlds

Most of your companions in The Outer Worlds are relatively blank moral slates, from the literal cleaning robot to the gold-and-adventure-chasing pirate. Parvati, however – while not preventing you from making one decision or another – is a decidedly good character. Despite her shy nature – the practical implications of which are a delight to dive further into in side missions, should you so choose – she has no issue speaking her mind when she sees you about to make an important decision.LoadingParvati was largely to blame (thanks particularly to an exceptional and earnest performance from Ashly Burch) for my first playthrough falling mostly on the Lawful Good side of the spectrum, something I doubt would have happened if Ellie or Nyoka were my first companions.
– Jon Ryan

Jesse Faden – Control

Jesse is the protagonist of the supernatural thriller Control, and also happens to be the newest Director of the Federal Bureau of Control. Jesse is endowed with incredible telekinetic powers, including the ability to levitate, launch objects at will, and control the minds of others.Best Games of 2019Her journey goes from being terrified and alone to one of the most confident and powerful characters in Control’s universe. Also, Control was secretly the best Star Wars game this year, if anyone’s asking.

– Matthew Adler

Second Sister – Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

You’re first introduced to Elizabeth Grullon’s character as Second Sister, an ominously dressed member of the Empire with a penchant for emphasizing threatening words in her speeches and who kills your friend in front of you.
She’s the classic villain type. Slowly, though, you get to know the Empire’s sword as Trilla Suduri with a less black and white background that you discover throughout the story’s remaining chapters. It’s the combination of her menacing but pained performance and her complex background that gives Second Sister her strength as a villain but her depth as a character, too.

– Tina Amini

BD-1 – Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

The modern age of Star Wars has given us no shortage of cute characters, from BB-8 to Porgs to IGN’s Person of the Year Baby Yoda. But BD-1 gives every other droid in the galaxy a run for their money as not just the most adorable bot in town, but also the cutest.The Best Droids in Star Wars Games, RankedRespawn has imbued BD-1 with an incredible sense of personality from its first meeting with Cal, crafting a droid that acts like an affectionate cat, has one incredible arsenal of tools, and who expresses more with its big, zooming eye than many characters in games this year. Cal’s journey is hard to imagine without BD-1 by his side.

– Jonathon Dornbush

Dante – Devil May Cry 5

It was great to see Dante once again, slicing and dicing his foes in stylish fashion to the tune of overdramatic metal music. Joined by Nero and newcomer, V, the crew in DMC5 is wild.Devil May Cry 5 – Dante ScreenshotsAfter a brutal defeat for Dante in the opening scenes of the game, it’s great to see his redemption story as he and the others work together to take down the demon Urizen. Oh, and fighting enemies with a motorcycle buzzsaw has to be one of the greatest feelings in games this year.

– Matthew Adler

Dimitri – Fire Emblem: Three Houses

While your own character in Fire Emblem: Three Houses can sometimes feel like the literal embodiment of the 😐 emoji, Prince Dimitri of the Kingdom of Faerghus undergoes a dramatic and ultimately satisfying journey in the Blue Lions path. Watching the cracks form on his kind and compassionate exterior, and seeing how his guilt and anger warp and consume him into an almost unrecognizable form made his own path as compelling – if not more so – than the overarching story of conflicts presented in Three Houses.LoadingAfter so many lords in the series have been portrayed as perfect embodiments of heroes, it was an exciting change of pace to find a leader unable to deal with his grief and composure in the face of despair, and also charge the player to help bring him back towards redemption.

– Brendan Graeber

Luigi – Luigi's Mansion 3

The other Mario brother took a star turn in 2019 while Mario himself took the year off. But we’re glad Luigi got a chance to shine, because he does exactly that in Luigi’s Mansion 3.LoadingAll of Luigi’s emotions are on display in this haunted-hotel adventure, and they’re all adorable. He’s funny, terrified, happy, and did we mention terrified?

– Ryan McCaffrey

Mama – Death Stranding

As an early voice guiding Sam Porter Bridges, you don’t actually meet Mama until much later in the campaign. Once you do, though, you learn of a tragic tale involving a mother and her unborn child, tethered together through dimensions by a ghostly umbilical cord. If that sounds weird, well, welcome to Death Stranding.LoadingMama ended up being one of my favorite characters, who made for some very intense and emotional moments, all while providing Sam the technology he needed to continue his journey to restore America.

– Matthew Adler

Cere – Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Although Cal is Fallen Order’s protagonist, Cere who goes on the more complex personal journey, and voice actor Deborah Wilson nails every beat of it.LoadingWilson’s Cere is at once a figure of strength and a cautionary tale; a woman wracked with guilt over her past discretions who nonetheless still believes in the Right Path.

– Lucy O’Brien

Goose – Untitled Goose Game

There couldn’t possibly be a more accurate representation of a goose that doesn’t give a flying f*** other than to wreak havoc across the otherwise peaceful English village the game is set in. But Goose isn’t just the Dennis the Menace of the bird world, side-eyeing its victims with its back turned while it awaits the best opportunity to pull stools from beneath their bums.LoadingWhile Goose can and does spread its wings with evil delight to avoid the villagers following its latest prank, Goose is also actually pretty adorable. Left to its own devices during an idle moment while it plots its next move to destroy an innocent man’s prized roses, it’ll flutter its little tail in wait. Goose can hop into boxes for hiding and fold its wings and neck down into its equivalent of a cat loaf. There’s a perfect dichotomy between Goose’s destructive tendencies and its seeming obliviousness, as if this is the only way Goose knows how to engage with the world around it.

– Tina Amini

The Starters – Pokemon Sword and Shield

Okay, so we all know which one is really the best here (Sobble), but the newest group of starters in Pokemon Sword and Shield were all incredibly cute and divided the internet into three distinct camps: #SobbleSquad, #GrookeyGang, and…those other people who chose Scorbunny.LoadingUnfortunately, all their evolutions are lackluster (and quite disturbing) in comparison, so I recommend never evolving them and allowing them to stay adorable forever.

– Matthew Adler

Marcus Fenix – Gears 5

The grizzled mug of the Gears franchise is still around, and thank goodness. Though Marcus Fenix is no longer the superstar of the series, he plays an important paternal role in Gears 5 – literally for son JD, of course, but figuratively for Gears 5 centerpiece Kait Diaz.LoadingHe’s at times funny, caring, compassionate, angry, and kick-ass, and he has the best line of dialogue in the game. Gears wouldn’t be the same without him.

– Ryan McCaffrey

The Protagonist – Disco Elysium

I can’t include The Protagonist’s real name here as its discovery is part of the plot… (It’s a long story.)LoadingBut rest assured, regardless of how you play, this character has more depth and speaks more to the human experience than perhaps any video game character in recent memory.

– Jeremy Azevedo

Your Character – The Outer Worlds

While there were a number of games that let you customize a character and make some decisions throughout their stories, none allowed us to create such a variety of different personalities and narratives as The Outer Worlds. Whether you wanted to be a clever socialite or a smash-happy psycho, Obsidian gave you a seemingly limitless number of ways to explore and interact with their old-timey dystopian future, every one of which would impact your story later on.LoadingYou might not have been the best character from a moral standpoint, but a game that gives players that sort of freedom with that level of impact is something truly special.

– Jon Ryan

Clifford Unger – Death Stranding

Cliff is a character you see a lot in Death Stranding, but it takes quite a while to figure out why (and how). He seems like he should be a bad guy. The only images we had seen of his were in war-torn areas, and it looked like he could control the ghost-like BTs.LoadingAnd yet, through the game, we see him joke with his BB, we see him dance, he brings BB a birthday cake. He’s a total mystery of a character that stole the show every time he was on screen.

– Mark Medina

Cal Kestis – Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

As one of the only surviving young Jedi during Order 66, Cal has a lot riding on his shoulders. Tasked with saving and restoring the Jedi Order, he transforms from scrappy scrapper to an extreme powerhouse by the end of the campaign.LoadingCal’s down-to-earth personality and willingness to seek change make him one of the best characters of 2019.

– Matthew Adler

For more Best of 2019, check out Game of the Year, Best PS4 Exclusive, Best Xbox Exclusive, Best Nintendo Switch Exclusive, and best PC Exclusive, as well as the full list of winners.If you buy something through this post, IGN may get a share of the sale. For more, learn more.

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