*This is a cleaned up version of our Father's day post from last year. It's still relevant so enjoy it all over again.
In honor of Father's Day we present our top 10 list of notable video game dads. As in real life some of these dads are amazing and some of them are downright deplorable, but for better or worse these 10 are some of the most memorable.
10. Big Daddies - BioShock Series
Big Daddies aren't really dads in most meanings of the word however, they're not just here in name alone. Big Daddies share some similarities with more conventional dads, they don't say much, they like power tools (especially drills) and they're very protective of their little girls. Unlike most dad's though they murder and maim any no good looking degenerate who gets near the little sisters. They do this in spite of the fact that the little sisters frequently emasculate them by calling them names like "Mr. Bubbles". While I think many of us don't necessarily want mechanized dads with homicidal tendencies, you have to appreciate their careful guardianship.
9. Dracula - Castlevania Symphony of the Night
Dracula obviously appears in quite a few titles in the Castlevania series, but Symphony of the Night is where you get to see his fatherly side. Unfortunately for Alucard, the main protagonist in SOTN and Dracula's son, his fatherly side is severely lacking. Dracula lets a castle full of minions attempt to kill his precious baby boy and if they cann't get the job done he eventually comes after Alucard himself. Though showing a bit of a soft side he does offer his son the chance to eradicate the entire human race alongside him, which Alucard impolitely declines. Nothing seals a father son bond like a death duel punctuated with vampiric super powers!
8. Cervantes - Soul Calibur series
Cervantes is one of the worst fathers ever, basically his only acknowledgement of his child is when he's beating her or attempting to consume her soul. To be fair it's a two way street, Ivy doesn't acknowledge Cervantes as her father the majority of the time and only really comes in contact with him in order to kill him. Though even if Ivy were a loving daughter, Cervantes is a undead pirate who also happens to be a self-serving egomaniac who murders people and eats souls, it's a pretty safe bet he'd have never shown up to her rhythmic gymnastics competitions or chaperoned her sleepovers.
7. Big Boss- Metal Gear Series
It's kind of hard to blame big boss for being a crappy father when he didn't have a whole lot of say in the whole having children, or more accurately having clones process. Still though that doesn't really excuse the crap he's put his "children" through. Poor Solid Snake in particular has a lot of experience in both dodging his fathers bullets and cleaning up his messes and his "brothers" have a nasty tendency to turn up dead. Honestly Big Boss is a pretty cool guy, sure a little insane at times, but insane in a way most of us respect. However he's not someone you'd ever want to be related to.
6.Mike Haggar - Final Fight
Having your daughter kidnapped by terrorists/gangsters/thugs/neighborhood hooligans is pretty much a rite of passage for any mayor. Most mayors either send out the entire city police force, immediately give in to any ransom demands or send in the one man who can stand up to a crime wave on his own. Not Mike Haggar though, he teams up with Jessica's boyfriend and his best friend to take on the criminals with his bare hands. Notably Haggar is billed as a former pro wrestler and street fight champion, so it wasn't one of those ordinary people doing extraordinary things in the face of a tragedy situations. So, it's not be a total surprise that he's very effective at both punching his way to a lower city crime rate and smashing his way through the punks that took his daughter. Still, Haggar is great mayor and an even better father. I think many of us wish we had a Dad who could pile drive all our troubles away.
5. Barret - Final Fantasy VII
For a man with a gun arm Barret is a pretty caring father. He spends a lot of time worrying about Marlene (and complaining about it a lot during your inter-party chats). Like most fathers he worries about how to keep her safe in a bad part of town, and what will happen to her if he's gone. A little more abnormal though, is that he's also embarking on the extremely dangerous and often deadly quest to save the world at the same time. It can be argued that leaving your child at home to mix drinks in the neighborhood bar while on an epic quest isn't great parenting. However without Barret and the rest of the party questing Marlene wouldn't have a world to live in any more, so you kind of have to give Barret a pass on that.
4.Jecht - Final Fantasy X
Jecht was a terrible father (though really, no one in FFX would be winning any father of the year awards) and basically every issue you have throughout your adventures in Zanarkand is all his fault in some way or another. It can be argued that he did make the ultimate sacrifice for good, but that really didn't make a lot of difference to Tidus who had to deal with years of an emotionally abusive, then physically absent father. As if several screwing up Tidus' emotional health wasn't bad enough, Jecht's poor parenting culminates in him being your final boss (as Braska's Final Aeon). Clearly being the final boss is a pretty egregious action, but Ject wasn't content just to be a really difficult boss, he also makes you fight him with the worst boss music of any Final Fantasy character ever. This makes him not only a bad father but an all around bad man.
3. Heihachi - Tekken Series
Though there have been a lot of bad dads on this list. Hiachi is the worst of the worst. Tossing your young son off a cliff would be bad enough on it's own for any normal man. However, Heihachi won't settle for less than the best so he follows it up by later throwing him into a live volcano. Kazuya manages to survive his father's many assaults and eventually has his own son with whom he has his own awful relationship. Being a terrible father to Kazuya and attempting to kill him on multiple occasions isn't good enough for Heihachi so naturally he eventually decides to turn his fatherly evil on his grandson Jin as well. Wherein he spends his time constantly betraying and attempting to kill Jin (and Kazuya too when he pops up). Perhaps the thing that really makes him truly evil though, is that he appears in every single Tekken game. So every few years his evil just keeps getting a new platform.
2. Ethan Myers - Heavy Rain
Getting one son inexplicably hit by car and following that up by getting the other kidnapped by a murderous psychopath normally wouldn't make for a great father. However, Ethan is one of the best dads ever. He probably should have taken a few more measures to keep Shaun from being abducted in the first place, but once it happens he does things to find his son most of us would never dream of. I mean I don't have kids but there are people I would die for, but I'd still have a heck of a time cutting off my own finger using unsanitary tools in an abandoned building. And that's just ONE example of the insane things Ethan has to do to rescue Shaun. Ethan really goes the distance to not only atone for his early parenting mishap but also because he really, really loves his son and is willing to do literally ANYTHING to get him back.
1. Harry Mason - Silent Hill
Harry is the ultimate father. First he rescues Cheryl as an abandoned baby on the side of the road and raises her as his own child then 7 years later faces the worst demons and hell spawn imaginable to get her back. Now as much as I was squawking about Ethan's seemingly super human ability to sever his own digits, I'd more sooner cut off every one of my limbs using a rusty spoon than face Silent Hill. Harry however takes the experience like a champ. In spite of being an ordinary guy with no special skills, who's so uncoordinated he falls off stoops, harry manages to beat back the hell spawn and never lose sight of the fact that his little girl is somehow lost in this horror. Asking every reasonably human person he comes in contact with if they've seen a little girl after beating down scalpel wielding zombie nurses with a lead pipe. I personally would have probably given up on it and just cried and/or killed myself as soon as I'd had by first experience with the rusted chain link nightmare that is the Otherside. Depending on which ending you get, how Harry's quest ends changes pretty dramatically, but regardless if you get something good or something bad, Harry never, ever gives up on Cheryl. Given the tired trope of men ignoring/and or being less loving to kids who "aren't theirs", Harry shows there's a lot more to being a father than biology.
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