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Video game characters who suck at their job
Posted on Tuesday, June 24 2008 @ 18:08:09 PST


Let's get the obvious out of the way straight away. Mario sucked at his job and I don't mean plumber. Let's face it, the guy's never held a wrench in his video game life so I don't think that moniker holds any water at this point. What I'm talking about here is the job of 'Princess Saver'. Mario blew what could have been a three level job (Level 1 - princess taken, Level 2 - journey to the princess, Level 3 - save princess!) into an adventure spanning multiple 'worlds'. Don't get me wrong, this was for the best since no one wants to play a paltry three levels before being crowned king of a place no one's ever heard of but what was the reason for this extension? "Thank you Mario. But our princess is in another castle!" Damn. Maybe Mario could have focused a little more on his navigational skills and a little less on his turtle jumping and dinosaur befriending skills? Just saying.

Gordon Freeman from Half Life

Gordon Freeman was a scientist. Scientists study things and as most people know, studying means you don't shoot the s*** out of it. Presumably Freeman was quite the scientist before HL1; his presence in Black Mesa indicates he must have had something going for him in the research department, but when the faeces hit the rotating air movement device he turned into a full time badass/terrible scientist. Clearly this is so much better for the game, I highly doubt a Half Life game about examining petri dishes and cultivating a distinct lack of social skills would have pulled in quite as many sales, but the fact remains Freeman the scientist sucked and blew at the same time.

Every character in every WWII game ever created

I don't care who they are, I don't care if they single handedly f***ed over every German character in virtual Poland, they all sucked at their job. Any member of the Allied forces had a single job to do; stop the evil Axis empire. This task was accomplished in six years of fighting in the real world while apparently the video game equivalent of the evil Axis empire is still going strong. This hasn't been going for a measly six years, WWII games go back at least as far as 1984 making them about a year older than I am. If the real World War 2 had lasted 24 years I'd be forced to assume that, thanks to the '60s, pilots would have been bombing the f*** out of German occupied territory while tripping their balls off on LSD and ground battles would have taken an odd turn once the shrooms had taken effect. I'm wondering how efficient the killing would have been when the world started leaking colour and the rifles started talking.

Jung and Michael from Rainbow 6: Vegas

These guys exist to help Logan and so, since you control him, you. Logan is the guy in control; he points, they follow; he points angrily, they shoot the guy dead. Or at least that's how it should work. In reality Jung and Michael are little more than planks of wood that fire bullets (sometimes) and fall down in a crumpled heap after absorbing too many of the terrorists' bullets (most of the time). You point to a door the opposite end of the room and they'll barge straight through terrorist infested areas to get there irrespective of the dire case of lead poisoning they're rapidly contracting. They're also incapable of making basic decisions themselves such as reviving a fallen team mate. I thought soldiers were meant to look out for each other? Apparently realising that they should stick that magic needle into whatever area of their comrade's body is nearest the sky is too much for these guys to understand which is why they'll wait for your command before doing anything but inhaling shrapnel so if it's you that's waiting for assistance... well you may as well just kick it now and save yourself time.

Master Chief from Halo

Hear me out here. Master Chief was initially created because of the growing problem with terrorists and space pirates. Of course this first calling wasn't to be because the Covenant came and started glassing the hell out of every planet they didn't like the look of. The Spartans suddenly had a new enemy; one that was ugly as sin in several different ways and had seen some hidden advantage of firing brightly coloured, slow moving, easily avoidable lumps of superheated plasma that causes weapons to overheat frequently as opposed to regular old ballistic based artillery that needs to be... reloaded every so often. So before these alien bad guys wiped humanity off the face of the galaxy Chief got a buzz on and started kicking Elite, and then Brute, ass. I'll never dispute his ability to do this since it is quite evident; I mean the Grunts call him Demon and the Elites, a frighteningly gung ho race, actually respect him. The problem is that all of this crazy exchange of lead/superheated ball of plasma is over the salvation/destruction of the human race with Chief obviously siding with the humans since he's one of us yet every single level in all of the Halo games has resulted in countless of the bloody marines dying. Yes this could be chalked up to their own ineptitude (and they are inept) but it's the Chief's job to stop them biting it given that he's the one who's been training for war right after training for the toilet and he's the one with the MJOLNIR armour. It's got to the stage now where I'm honestly wondering if humans have reached endangered species level and, more relevantly, if they hold any military funerals at all any more or just kick them all out into space at the next opportunity to save time. Personally I think being engulfed in an enormous glowing orb of ship grade plasma would be a cool way to dispose of the body.
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