A hero’s journey is incomplete without a formidable villain to challenge them. Over the years, the gaming world has witnessed countless antagonists, each with their unique motives and methods. However, some have left an indelible mark on our memories. Here are the top 10 best video game villains of all time.
10. Shao Kahn – Mortal Kombat Series
Shao Kahn, the malevolent ruler of Outworld, has been a constant threat to Earth Realm since his debut in Mortal Kombat 2. This sinister character has appeared in most Mortal Kombat games, both in the old and current timeline. Although his fate remains uncertain after being killed by Shang Tsung in Mortal Kombat 11, the unpredictable nature of the series suggests that he might return in the future.
9. Handsome Jack – Borderlands Series
As the President of the Hyperion Corporation, Handsome Jack seizes control of the planet Pandora and becomes the primary antagonist in Borderlands 2. He also makes minor appearances in Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and Borderlands 3. Despite his ruthless dictatorship, Handsome Jack doesn’t see himself as a villain, which adds to his complexity and appeal.
8. King K Rool – Donkey Kong Series
This pirate crocodile has been on a relentless quest to steal Donkey Kong’s bananas since 1994’s Donkey Kong Country. Although he occasionally succeeds, his plans are always thwarted by DK and his family. King K Rool also appears in Super Smash Bros Ultimate as one of the most powerful characters in the game, showcasing his enduring popularity.
7. M Bison – Street Fighter Series
As the leader of Shadaloo, M Bison has been a constant menace to the Street Fighter characters. First appearing in Street Fighter 2 as the main villain, Bison has remained a series mainstay, enlisting characters like Balrog, Vega, and Sagat to aid him in his quest for global domination.
6. Dr. Robotnik – Sonic Series
Dr. Robotnik, also known as Eggman, is the primary antagonist in Sega’s Sonic series, much like Bowser in the Super Mario series. Despite his numerous attempts to conquer the world, Sonic always manages to foil his plans. Perhaps it’s time for Eggman to consider a career change.
5. Andrew Ryan – Bioshock Series
Few villains can instill fear as effectively as Andrew Ryan, the founder of Rapture and owner of Ryan Industries. As the main antagonist of the Bioshock series, Ryan’s iron-fisted rule over the underwater city of Rapture showcases his descent into tyranny and madness.
4. Albert Wesker – Resident Evil Series
Albert Wesker is arguably the most sadistic video game villain of all time. As the former S.T.A.R.S leader and key figure in the Umbrella Corporation, Wesker played a crucial role in developing numerous viruses and B.O.Ws. His actions led to the death or infection of countless people in his pursuit of global domination. Although Chris Redfield finally killed Wesker in Resident Evil 5, his malevolent influence continues to haunt the Resident Evil series.
3. Ganon – The Legend Of Zelda Series
Ganon has been the central antagonist in most Legend of Zelda games, seeking to claim the Triforce and conquer Hyrule. However, a young hero named Link always seems to be born just in time to thwart his plans. With his ability to take on various forms, including the human disguise Ganondorf, it’s likely that Ganon will return to menace Hyrule in future Zelda games.
2. Sephiroth – Final Fantasy 7
Sephiroth’s iconic silver hair and long sword have made him one of the most recognizable video game characters of all time. As the main villain in Final Fantasy 7, he seeks to destroy the earth by summoning a meteor to collide with the planet. Sephiroth’s enigmatic nature and limited backstory only add to his allure, making him a fan favorite since his introduction in 1997.
1. Bowser – Super Mario Series
For over 35 years, Bowser has been attempting to conquer the Mushroom Kingdom, despite his repeated failures. Since his debut in 1985’s Super Mario Bros, King Koopa has appeared in most Mario games and spin-offs. While he may not be as destructive or evil as other villains on this list, Bowser’s iconic status and relentless pursuit of Princess Peach make him the most unforgettable video game villain of all time.
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