Video games are filled with memorable characters, whose names recall their many feats of bravery and courage. Maria. master chief. Pac-Man. Tetris block. These icons, along with many others, are known to gamers around the world as heroes.
But sometimes a name is memorable not because of who it’s attached to, but because the name itself is so unusual that you can’t help but keep it in the memory banks of your mind. And while many of these characters are icons in their own right, their names might be the most memorable thing about them.
ten Relentless Discharge, Dark Souls
Dark Souls has no shortage of bad bosses, but generally when we say “bad” in reference to this game, we just mean they’re hard. Not so with Ceaseless Discharge, which is nasty…that is, disgusting.
He’s in the Demonic Ruins, towering over you over a lava field. Its name comes from the open wounds on its body, which spit out lava – hence it constantly discharges molten rock. But there had to be a better way to communicate that than that.
9 Pizza Pasta, Punch-Out!!
Nintendo’s Punch!! The series has gifted us with several iconic characters, from the surprisingly powerful little Mac to the iconic bald bull, but Italian boxer Pizza Pasta hasn’t quite joined their ranks. With a name like “Pizza Pasta”, you have to wonder why.
Surely it’s not because Nintendo, in its lazy genius, chose to name it after two foods, is it? Surely he wouldn’t be so embarrassed by that goofy name that he’d choose never to bring it back, would he? Law? All we’re saying is it’s time to bring Pizza Pasta out of retirement for one last salty, salty fight.
8 Poo, earthbound
Earthbound was notoriously marketed by a campaign that said, “This game stinks!” And it’s actually a classic that still holds today, but between that marketing campaign and the Poo name, one would be forgiven for associating the game with smelly garbage.
Poo himself is one of the four main members of your party, the brave and responsible crown prince of the distant kingdom of Dalaam. He even has access to some of the most powerful psychic abilities in the game, but if you were a kid when you played Earthbound, his name probably reminds you the most.
7 Noob Saibot, Mortal Kombat 2
Mortal Kombat has no shortage of memorable characters, with icons like Scorpion, Kitana, and Sub-Zero. In fact, according to games lore, secret character Noob Saibot was actually the original Sub-Zero before his death and resurrection under… a much dumber name.
To be fair, it’s named after Mortal Kombat creators Ed Boon John Tobias; flip their last names and you get Noob Saibot. But these days, it’s like playing with fire to name a character in a fighting game “Noob.”
6 Butz, Final Fantasy 5
Now, outside of Japan, Final Fantasy 5’s good-natured protagonist is known as Bartz…but if you translate his name directly from the original Japanese, you’ll get “Butz.” This translation of his name was even featured in some game guides and merchandise around the game, lending credence to the idea that the dude’s intended nickname was, indeed, Butz.
It’s probably a good thing that this game wasn’t localized when it was originally released. Can you imagine the chaos that would ensue if you tried to talk about the cool new Final Fantasy hero Butz with your playground friends?
5 Linkle, Warriors of Hyrule
When the original trailer for The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild dropped in 2014, the internet was abuzz with speculation that the game featured a daughter version of Link. After all, the trailer showed him with long hair and a leaner, more feminine figure, and Nintendo said the game was about rethinking series conventions.
But Link was still a boy. Instead, we got a girl Link in the spin-off Hyrule Warriors, but to differentiate her from the “real” Link, her name was changed to… Linkle. The Wii U era was full of bad decisions, but this was by far the worst.
4 Guybrush Threepwood, The Secret of Monkey Island
In their heyday, the point-and-click gurus at LucasArts were known for the generous personalities and humor they could inject into their games. Exhibit A: Guybrush Threepwood.
The hero of the Monkey Island games (starting with the original, The Secret Of Monkey Island) has the kind of name you only give a character with enough humor to handle it. Luckily, the games are full of in-jokes and references; his name isn’t even the craziest thing about them.
3 Fayt Leingod, Star Ocean: Until the End of Time
Pretty much every RPG has a lot of talk about fate and divinity and whatnot, so you have to give Tri-Ace credit: they’re just blunt in naming Star Ocean’s third protagonist, uh, “fate”.
To be fair, there are a few twists that recontextualize its name, making it a little less clunky. But only a little. This guy’s name is like a Grand Theft Auto protagonist called “Gunne Leincar”.
2 Sol Badguy, Guilty Gear
Guilty Gear games are known for their depth, gorgeous graphics, and absurdly deep story. What they’re not known for is subtlety. For proof, look at Sol Badguy. This guy’s backstory is complex, but suffice to say he finds himself on the wrong side of the law more than once throughout the series.
One could also say, given his long-running rivalry with high-ranking police officer Ky Kiske, that from Ky’s perspective, he’s… the only villain in the series.
1 Esty Dee, Workshop
The long-running Atelier series has slowly gained popularity by word of mouth in the West, but it remains mostly a niche concern. While they’re solid games with a lot to offer, they’re very out of step with Western tastes…and sometimes that extends to the English language.
Take Esty Dee, a supporting actor in the Arland sub-trilogy. Say his name out loud. Does that sound like something… negative, in particular? Something you might not want to experience? Yeah. Gust did him no favors.
NEXT: The Most Memorable Tutorial Sections In Video Games
Aloy goes without a love interest again in Horizon Forbidden West, which wouldn’t be so bad if the game bothered to explore her
About the Author