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A list of characters from the Saints Row series. Gang affiliation is a big part of the characters' identities, so they're grouped by the gang they work/worked for (if applicable).
Note: Spoilers from all games in the franchise are listed below regardless of when the character entered the franchise, so be warned if you haven't played all of them and wish to remain unspoiled.
The fully-customizablenote In the first game, could only be male protagonist of the series. An anti-heroic (except in the second game) sociopath, the unnamed protagonist, usually referred to as "Playa" in the first game and "Boss" afterwards, rises from an anonymous citizen on the streets of Stilwater recruited by Julius Little into the Third Street Saints, to a lieutenant of the aforementioned gang, the eventual leader of the Saints, an international celebrity, and finally the freakin' President of the United States. According to pre-release information for Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell, they eventually become God Emperor of the Universe.
Mellows out considerably in the third game, and not quite willing to commit as many atrocities as in Saints Row 2, with several Pet the Dog moments. However, the Boss is still quite the nasty piece of work and therefore, remains a Villain Protagonist.
Veers straight into Unscrupulous Hero in Saints Row IV, wherein s/he not only expresses concern for the people under their jurisdiction as President, but also spends the entire game working to save people and take down the Big Bad. And as the game takes place largely inside a simulation, technically they never commit any crimes at all.
Bad Bad Acting: The Boss simply cannot act, at all. Either on movie sets, or when their life really does depend on it while they're impersonating Cyrus Temple.
Benevolent Boss: Despite being a Sociopath, Boss is very protective and fair to subordinates so long as they stay loyal.
Berserk Button: In the sequels, harming the Boss's subordinates is enough for them to take a break from carefree mayhem and give the perpetrator their full attention.
Also betrayal, you can be an undercover cop or a former rival gang member but never fuck with the Boss when it comes to loyalties or your own personal grim reaper will hunt you to the ends of the earth.
You honor the dead. Doesn't matter who you are, you honor the dead. Interrupting a funeral with have Boss help the mourner literally bury those who do so alive, unleash The Dragon to go on a Ax-CrazyRoaring Rampage of Revenge, and if you so choose go terrorist.
A more minor and humorous example is in the Boss's love of Biz Markie. You don't butcher Biz Markie and get away with it for long. Especially if you're Nolan North.
"Zinyak! Zinyak, you leave Biz Markie alone! You leave Markie out of this!! Oh, you sunuvabitch...I'M GONNA KILL YOU! IT'S NOT OPERA!!!!!"
In Saints Row IV, when Matt Miller suggests that rescuing Johnny Gat is a bad idea, the Boss knocks him to the ground with a Megaton Punch and starts beating the shit out of him; had the other Saints not intervened, the Boss may well have beaten poor Matt to death.
Bi the Way: All party members can be romanced by the Boss, regardless of gender.
Book Dumb: Zig-zagged. At times the Boss comes across as downright stupid, but there are occasional hints that it's of the obfuscating variety and every once in a while the Boss says something genuinely insightful or smart (which almost always results in a shocked reaction from the other characters).
But for Me, It Was Tuesday: When you call up Keith David and Maero as homies, Keith tells Maero that he has never heard the Boss talk about him or the Brotherhood. Maero thinks it's because of this trope and figures the Boss probably doesn't bother thinking twice about the people they have killed. It's then subverted when Keith points out that the Boss has talked about the other gangs, their respective leaders and even Donnie Wong.
Character Development: Goes from Julius' lieutenant to a borderline psychopath in the second game. The range of voice options can elaborate this further. The third game has Boss come across as more level headed than Shaundi, helped further by player input on certain decisions (nuke the Syndicate's headquarters or keep it as a base, use zombie gas to create more homies or dispose of it, sacrifice Shaundi to go after Killbane or save her). In the third game, the Boss isn't as bitter or vengeful with Julius dead, enjoying the power and celebrity status earned from taking over Stillwater and fighting the Syndicate head on. By Saints Row IV the Boss admits they honestly, genuinely, care about their crew and would do anything to protect them.
At least one voice in the third game mentions having a therapist, so that could be a contributing factor.
Combat Pragmatist: No matter the danger or absurdity of the situation, the Boss will find a way to win. In addition to taking hostages, false surrenders, and having truly ludicrous proficiency with improvised weapons (fire hydrants, giant purple dildos, bricks etc), Boss is a master of psychological warfare. The Boss is perfectly willing to target loved ones, use humiliation tactics like winning a televised wrestling match against an enemy, or making demoralizing public media declarations.
Coup de Grāce Cutscene: Finished most of the gang leaders in the series like this. Benjamin King briefly allies himself with the Saints after being betrayed by Warren and forced out of the Vice Kings in the first game then gets Put on a Bus until IV, Matt Miller in The Third bribes the Boss into allowing him to pull a Screw This, I'm Outta Here! instead.
Regardless of how you play, it's Lampshaded by almost every character who rides shotgun with you. Characters from the first game give a familiar Continuity Nod in regards to it. And Jane waxes poetic about your vehicular carnage.
Here's something well hidden. Call up a homie then when they arrive dismiss them. S\he will get in their vehicle and take off. You can jump in the passenger seat and now Boss will give them crap over their driving. It's best to have a load of flashbangs to freak out your homie and any driver\passengers to encourage accidents.
Et Tu, Julius?: In the second game, it was revealed that Julius tried to kill the Boss by destroying the Yacht seen in the finale.
Even Evil Has Standards: The Boss might be an amoral crime lord, but is still horrified after seeing the corpses of people experimented on by Ultor in the Ultor Exposed DLC.
Again in the third game. Murder, theft, human trafficking, insurance fraud, and wanton destruction are all fine. Hypercommercialisation, on the other hand, is something the Boss starts having doubts about. This may or may not stick depending on the ending chosen.
In "Takeover the City" mission of The Third the Boss is noticeably disturbed when Pierce talks about collecting sex dolls.
Also in the third game Boss doesn't like the way the director of the movie (that they happen to be starring in) treats the co-star actress, and quickly begins trying to screw with him in an effort to get him to stop. This is even though the director does nothing but praise whatever Boss does. They also try to get the poor girl to stand up for herself so he won't pick on her so much.
In The Trouble With Clones Boss becomes kind of heroic, fighting off an army division attacking Pierce and Johnny Tag, even showing remorse for the Saints failing Gat.
Boss also draws the line at nuclear war and human genocide.
Faux Affably Evil: Make no mistake, the Boss has a sadistic streak underneath that puckish roguery.
For the Evulz: By the time of the second game, Boss made it clear that liberating the city for peace wasn't a priority anymore. The final lines of Saints Row 2 confirm this. "This is our city [now], we do whatever the fuck we want." Downplayed somewhat in later games.
From Nobody to Nightmare: The first game begins with the Playa just walking down a street before being caught in a gang fight and co-opted into the Saints. Needless to say, Boss takes to the lifestyle like a duck to water.
With the Boss' election as President of the US in Saint's Row IV, they may very well have become the full-fledged champion of this trope. And then the same person becomes the President/God Emperor for Life of the Universe after taking over the Zin Empire, as shown in Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell.
Garbage Wrestler: The only way the Boss was able to fight Killbane in Murderbrawl.
He Who Fights Monsters: Inverted, the Boss starts Saints Row 2 as a vengeful gangbanger out for power and revenge. By the time Saints Row IV happens, the Saints are acknowledged as the closest thing Boss has to family, and goes so far as to save America from a nuclear strike and fight an alien invasion. Still a jerkass though.
Implacable Man: Both in and out of gameplay, assuming you do enough diversions. Blowing up the Boss just gets them pissed off, and in the second game, the full complement of perks means that the Boss can jump out of a plane, get hit by three exploding trucks on fire, and take a point-blank shotgun blast to the face without going down.
The third turns this Up to Eleven once you get around max respect level, with several upgrades making them immune to each type of damage. It can get to the point where Boss can only be harmed by melee attackers.
Inexplicably Awesome: Throughout all the games, we never get anything more than tantalising glimpses into their Mysterious Past, never anything concrete that explains just how some random schmuck remade themselves into the most deadly person on the planet.
"Sociopath" also seems to be a bit of insistent terminology. Despite some of their more questionable actions, by Saints Row IV the Boss cares too much about the other Saints to be deemed as much.
It's All About Me: Starts to have this attitude in the second game as they do things for their own benefit and personal reasons. It levels out somewhat in third game, but by the fourth game, the Boss' selfish attitude rises to a new level; the game opens with the Boss, the President of the United States, suffering a massive PR disaster since they proposed that the phrase "One nation under me" should replace "One nation under God". When helping Asha escape from her personal nightmare, the Boss keeps thinking that by having an evil twin in Asha's nightmare, it's about the Boss overall. CID also questions why the Boss keeps giving Pierce no respect at all, despite how Pierce always stayed loyal and gave ideas to help the Boss (The Boss claims they rag Pierce in good fun rather than malicious intent). It isn't until the Boss gets called out for their selfish attitude and taking advantage of others by someone who had stayed loyal to them that the Boss starts to think about others for a change.
Kick the Dog\Kick the Son of a Bitch: The Boss is fond of doing this, starting from the second game. Arguably the most brutal example was crippling Matt's hand with fireworks. Matt had nothing to do with The Brotherhood other than doing their tattoos and being close friends with Maero. Oh the other hand many still view killing a teenage girl by locking her in a car and having her boyfriend unknowingly run her over at a monster truck rally as the worst thing the Boss ever did, even though she was involved in the murder of Carlos.
Made of Iron: Leaps from a moving plane to another moving plane. With no parachute, or cables, or common sense. Plays in traffic for petty change, drives around an angry tiger at high speeds for training.
In the third game pairing Boss with Zimos may prompt some dialogue where Boss asks Zimos what his real name is when Zimos says it's "Need to know and you don't". When Zimos asks Boss their name the Russian female boss says her name is classified.
Male 3 tells Zimos that his name is Winston Churchill. He doesn't buy it.
Also, Female 1 tells Zimos that her name is Martha Washington. He doesn't buy that either.
The last Heli Assault activity against the Deckers reveals that Kinzie knows the Boss's real name. The Boss promptly tells her to shut up when she starts to say it.
Was originally planned to be "Mikey" in the first game, but they scrapped it.
In the fourth game, using the Nolan North voice makes it clear that you are, in fact, playing Nolan North. So its possibly to assume that, all this time, the player character was just Nolan North all along.
Not-So-Harmless Villain: Maero originally believes that The Boss is just a washed-up gangbanger and therefore gives them a pitiful proposition. He REALLY regrets this as the gang war between them becomes increasingly brutal and vicious.
One-Man Army: Boss is a striding engine of destruction. You can run, but you'll just die trying.
Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: The Cockney voice (Male 1) in SR 2 was particularly guilty of this, especially because the cutscene dialogue barely changes from one voice to another, which leads the Boss spouting sentences that no English person would ever use. In SR 3 and 4, Male 3 takes over as the Cockney voice. the newer voice actor is far more authentic, especially since more English slang words and phrases are inserted in place of Americanisms and any fixed dialogue in cutscenes is written to fit around all the voice characters.
Pay Evil unto Evil: The Ronin and Brotherhood missions especially consist of increasingly bloody games of tit-for-tat between the Boss and whoever's stupid enough to try and hurt the other Saints. The Boss' main motivation for total war against the world's largest criminal syndicate was due to the death of one Saint.
Person of Mass Destruction: By the end of SRTT, the Boss is able to blow up a sky scraper, sink an aircraft carrier, take on a well-armed paramilitary group, bring down a flying warship, set up a citystate, aside from kill a truly ungodly number of people.
Pet the Dog: Seems to show genuine care and concern for the Saints, especially the lieutenants. This is especially apparent with their reaction to having to Mercy Kill Carlos.
In the "Gangstas In Space" DLC Boss is extremely nice to the actress they have to work with. They coach her throughout the DLC to stand up for herself and not take shit from the Jerk Ass director who insults and belittles her at every chance he gets. Soon they even become friends and she can be called as a homie upon completion of the last mission. By the end Boss may have rubbed off on her a bit more than they intended...
Gets a big one with Matt in the 4th game. Since they are one of the last human leaders, they give Matt, a big Nyteblade fan, control of the entire Nyteblade franchise. Matt is left nearly speechless.
If you think about everything Boss does over the quantrilogy there's a lot they don't have to do to be nice, but does so anyway. Help out who they're friends with, befriends a number of allies, lots of little and not so little strokes of the pooch throughout the four games.
According to Keith, the Boss holds Donnie Wong in higher regard than Maero. Which is touching in a way, considering all they ever did was bully the poor guy.
In Saints Row IV, French Boss in particular comes across as very gentle and kind when speaking to her lieutenants.
Protagonist Without A Past: In the first game, he's just an ordinary schmuck who happens to walk right into a gang war, without any backstory. Was he a criminal beforehand, or a law-abiding citizen seduced by the criminal lifestyle? We don't find out. However, along with having way more dialogue, we get some small tidbits of info. For example, they mention coming to a bordello since they were a teenager, and one of the female voices reveals that her father loved guns and told her that you could never have enough. Plus, the events of the first game are your protagonist's past now. Lampshaded in IV when the Boss says flat out that no one cares who they were before they joined the Saints.
Team Dad: Shows shades of this in Saints Row IV towards Shaundi. Both of them.
The Captain: After the first incarnation of the Saints.
The Sociopath: Cares for lieutenants, but makes it clear that they're in the gang scene for the perks and power. Has nothing but contempt for Julius's attempt to be a "killer with a conscience," with no loyalty to his supposed crew.
Julius: Don't you get it? The Saints didn't solve a goddamn thing. Drugs were still being pushed, innocent people were still being killed... all we did was turn into Vice Kings that wore purple.
Playa: Jesus Christ, you sound like a pussy!
Julius: I sound like someone who's not a sociopath.
Took a Level in Kindness: In Saints Row The Third and especially in Saints Row IV. How the Saints Saved Christmas makes Boss heroic to the point Shepard would be scouting for them, were it not for, say, killing Julius.
Definitely with Gat. The Boss leaps into action as soon as they learn about his murder trial in 2, in The Trouble with Clones in 3 there's no question the Saints are going to go help Johnny Tag even though he's a flawed clone of Gat and not actually Gat, and in 4 as soon as there's even a whiff of a chance that Gat is bouncing around inside the Zin Matrix the Boss is demanding to go after him.
Walking Wasteland: In Saints Row IV, the Buff power allows the Boss to set people on fire, freeze them solid, or electrocute them just by standing near them, while the Sprint Tornado power allows you to destroy whole streets just by running up and down them.
The third game, while doing away with four separate fighting styles, incorporates wrestling moves into the Boss's fighting style by default.
Gender, Race and Playing Style Selection Tropes
Absolute Cleavage: With the female boss' sex appeal set at maximum, and while wearing one of several outfits that become available. The "Elegant Couture" dress provides a textbook example of this trope, even if the Boss is virtually flat-chested.
Acrofatic: You can make your Boss fat (ranging from "chubby" fat to "gives The Notorious B.I.G. a run for his money" fat), and they'll still be able to sprint and jump without a hitch. Regarding the sprint, you can unlock infinite sprint... meaning you can run laps around the city and still look like you're in danger of having a heart attack at any minute.
Blood Knight: Female 1 voice of The Third clearly loves fighting, with Bond One Liners in combat either deriding her kills as being disappointing or occasionally commending them as a good fight.
Boobs of Steel: Possible for a female Boss with the Sex Appeal slider all the way up.
Call Back: When drunk, she will laugh and laugh and laugh at the joke she made to Gat in the first game.
Combat Stilettos: These can be given to the boss, regardless of gender. Note that in some cutscenes, the Boss will be shown walking properly in them; in others, they will be walking flatfooted despite the shoes being actual heels.
Foreshadowing: Female voice 1 muses that when this is all over she might get into politics, and mentions an interest in dancing. Lo and behold, now she's the President and cannot pass up amateur night at a strip club.
Four More Measures: When singing "What I Got" with Pierce early on in the game, several of the voices will have Boss singing a line too early and noting that they always mess that part up.
Female 2 voice from IV mentions wanting to go shoe-shopping.
Hidden Depths: Depending on the voice you use s\he be may drop interesting tidbits. Collecting glass unicorns for example. Female 1 apparently went to college and was on a co-ed curling team, while Male 1 has read Jane Eyrethirteen times. The Zombie voice in The Third, during "Three Way", briefly drops the snarling to say that he's fluent in 6 languages.
The Lad-ette: Played straight with all the female voices in Saints Row 2 and the Russian and Latina voices in The Third. Female voice 1 in TT also counts, but she does occasionally show a feminine side. The Latina voice is this trope to a T though.
Muscles Are Meaningless: The flip side of the Acrofatic option; you can be skinny as a rail and still throw people around like rag dolls and kill Brutes like it's nobody's business.
Nolan North: The gimmick voice available in the fourth game, at the fourth wall's expense.
Platonic Life Partners: With Johnny Gat, if you play a girl. They're very close friends, but there's nothing sexual going on, and Johnny is hooked up with Aisha until "Bleeding Out" anyway. Can be averted in Saints Row 4 however.
Poirot Speak: Russian Boss in The Third and French Boss in IV.
Retcon: It's been stated by the creators that, if you choose a female character in Saints Row 2, it is to be assumed that she was always female.
Single-Target Sexuality: Russian Boss in The Third is rather shameless with confessing her obsession towards Pierce, of all people. Pierce is understandably creeped out while Shaundi gets a lot of snark value from all of this.
Spicy Latina: Think of the hottest food you've ever eaten. She's even spicier than that, like the other voices the female Spanish voice in the second and third games make Boss this trope Up to Eleven.
Statuesque Stunner: The height is the only thing about the protagonist that cannot be changed. Thus female Boss' height is set at as least a foot taller than Shaundi, placing her at somewhere in the 6'2 - 6'5 range.
Strangely, Shaundi in The Third is now almost Boss' height, possible thanks to her high heels. However a female boss will still tower a head height over most NPCs.
Trademark Favorite Food: In the first game's epilogue, the boss mentions that he wanted to go to Freckle Bitch's, and in the fourth expresses surprise that Freckle Bitch's never opened in Steelport.
Villainous Crossdresser: Can be achieved by playing as a male Boss while wearing female clothes, makeup, and jewelry. Do not, under any circumstances, confuse him for a Sissy Villain though...
Virtual Paper Doll: Thanks to the many options in clothing and body builds, you can make your own Boss rather easily. And making it resemble to another character is far from impossible. Pick up long purple hair, a tanktop, some shorts and pretend you're in Roanapur.
Blonde ponytail, red tank and black trousers, or jacket and jeans and you have Buffy. Crop top and cargoes, Kim Possible. With a little work you can pull off John Cena and Ric Flair (replete with their signature taunts). All part of the fun of course. There are even tutorials on how to make your Boss into a doppelganger of one of the other Saints, leading to cutscenes with two Johnny Gats conversing with each other, the only concrete difference being the voice and the height.
With the Boss being the President in IV, it is very possible to make him look like Funny Valentine.
Vocal Dissonance: You can mix and match bodies and voices for the Boss. You can have a male body with a female voice, or the other way around. And then there's the zombie voice from The Third...
When I Was Your Age: Parodied; one of the lines demonstrating the "Male 1" voice in the third game complains about kids playing video games, saying that when he was young, he would've been playing outside... killing people in real life.
Non-Action Big Bad: He tends to let Ultor goons and the gangs do his dirty work for him. The few times he gets caught without any form of protection he is quick to try and talk his way out of the situation. This ultimately fails to work on the Boss and gets him shot out a window from the top story of a skyscraper for his trouble.
Everyone Hates Mimes: During his last mission with the Boss he calls out assassination targets for the Boss to snipe. He is supposed to be spotting people specifically linked to Dex but asks the player to kill a nearby mime just because he doesn't like them.
Non-Action Guy: He has to go to the Saints for protection when Dex starts sending Ultor goons after him.
Of course, the Saints did blow up an aircraft carrier. And he also fully believed that the false-flag operation Kia set up was the Saints' doing, and it had resulted in A) the destruction of Steelport's statue and B) the death of Mayor Reynolds.
Missing White Woman Syndrome: Given the sheer number of dead bodies the Saints have left in their wake, one of which was the (Black) Mayor of Stilwater, the fact that only JessicaParish is used an example of their brutality is simply staggering.
"I've been a soldier longer then you've been alive!"
Big Bad Ensemble: Forms one with Killbane, even though their groups are trying to kill each other, too.
Cassandra Truth: When fighting him he simply cannot believe the Boss' (true) claim that Kia was behind the terrorist attack.
His audio logs in IV reveal they were lovers (as did her dialogue in III, when the Boss was disguised as Cyrus), which may explain why. It helped that Kia was far more emotionally invested in the operation than even Cyrus knew.
Colonel Kilgore: He believes "shock and awe" will win the war against gangs.
Kia: Nyte Blayde's the face of STAG? Why don't you just put someone in a fucking deer suit?
Monica: Hearts and minds will win the war, my dear.
Cyrus: Shock and awe wins wars, Senator. Authorize the Daedalus and this will all be over.
Enemy Mine: In one mission, he offers to turn a blind eye to the Saints if they give Josh Birk back (in a manner which allows the player to automatically "take over" a selected area on the map). In Saints Row IV, he apparently became so disillusioned with America treating the Saints as heroes that he joined an Al Qaeda-expy terrorist group to destroy Washington D.C.
Face-Heel Turn: By the time of IV, he's become a wanted Western Terrorist.
Fallen Hero: Becomes a maniacal terrorist in the fourth game, apparently broken by the USA's embrace of the Saints.
General Failure: While he himself is perfectly competent, Cyrus' losses are ridiculous given his mission is to stop a few street gangs. It'd be safer to be posted as a mine-sweeper than work in STAG.
He Who Fights Monsters: Plans to nuke Washington, DC in IV, which would cause destruction and mayhem on a scale that could easily outdo anything the Boss did.
I Did What I Had to Do: His justification to Boss for using the Daedalus, in an attempt that would have destroyed all of Steelport. Likewise for nuking Washington D.C.
Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: His actions against the gangs are bad but justifiable... up to a point. He hits the slope around the time the Daedalus starts razing Steelport, and does a goddamn swan-dive off it in IV.
Well-Intentioned Extremist: Goes from having STAG as a presence to enforcing martial law. If Kia is allowed to go terrorist, he tries to blow up Steelport. He goes even further in Saints Row IV, having become a terrorist who wants to blow up Washington DC for letting the Saints be heroes.
Face-Heel Turn: Near the end she stages a terrorist attack to blame the Saints.
False Flag Operation: Kidnapping Shaundi, Viola and Mayor Reynolds so their bodies would be found in a bombing she pins on the Saints, which leads to STAG destroying Steelport and killing everyone in it.
Not So Heroic Antagonist: We can accept Cyrus trying to eliminate the gangs, and some of her actions are under his orders, instructions or with his authority. Staging a terrorist attack to legitimize levelling Steelport however is more or less a Moral Event Horizon.
Killed Off for Real: In both endings. If the player chooses the "good" ending she gets killed in a fight with the Boss. If they choose the bad ending instead she gets blown up along with everyone else at the statue.
Not So Stoic: When Boss meets her disguised as Cyrus she mentions a love for Aisha and how she joined STAG to go after those responsible for her death, leading The Boss to note their reasons for joining were Not So Different
Using another voice for Boss she will reveal she and Cyrus were together, and suggests rekindling the relationship. Boss of course let's slip that Cyrus likes men, probably to mess with her.
Yet another voice will have Boss needle Kia about her feelings about Pierce, seeing as Boss is obsessed over him. Kia gets rather flustered over Temple's\Boss' insistent questioning over her feelings for Pierce.
Well-Intentioned Extremist: Setting up a terrorist attack to blame the Saints and give STAG reason to destroy Steelport, and perfectly willing to have the mayor killed in the bombing. Though she dies with them if the bombs goes off.
An evil race of aliens set to invade and take over the Earth in Saints Row IV. Not much is known about them aside from the fact that they apparently have access to advanced virtual reality technology which they use to trap the Saints.
Dirty Coward: He spends the latter part of his boss fight behind a forcefield while he sends Zin and explosive C.I.D.s after you.
Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: The collectibles that reveal his origin shows that he was very fond of his mother. She's the reason why he likes art.
Even Evil Has Standards: During one of his text adventures, should anyone click the kill your parents option, he finds whoever selected that option barbaric.
Also, when clicking the option to "Play selections from the Zin Orchestra at high volume", he admits that no one, not even his enemies, deserves to hear songs from them (since Zinyak mentions that they're famous for making horrible songs).
Evil Is Petty: The loyalty missions show off just how big of an asshole Zinyak can be, from ruining Matt's carefully constructed NyteBlade fan fiction/simulation to missinging Biz Markie so wretchedly that even Pierce is astounded.
In his text-adventure-style autobiography, he details how he conquered one civilization and accepted a bet from their leader to spare him and his people on the outcome of an arm wrestling match. When Zinyak loses (due to not taking into account the leader's cephalopodic anatomy and the species differing idea of tables) he still casually shoots him in the eye and orders the slaughter of the rest. He keeps that leader's tongue as a good luck charm.
Final Boss: The toughest one the series has had to date.
From Nobody to Nightmare: The collectible text adventures which tells his origins reveals that he started out working at a Pastry Shop. He also reveals he wanted to be a museum curator at one point.
Genius Bruiser: He's easily twice as tall as any human, yet he loves Earth literature.
Hannibal Lecture: Attempts to convince the Boss in one mission that regardless of the fact that he, conquered and destroyed Earth it's still Boss' fault. After all, he did warn him what would happen. He goes on to claim that Earth was already a Crapsack World with the Boss running it, and all he ever caused was pain and misery.
Karmic Death: The Boss does threaten to rip his head off when they first meet. Guess what happens in the final battle?
Hopeless Boss Fight: A QTE one at the beginning. The Boss actually doesn't do too badly against him at first and if it wasn't for Zinyak's powers, would've killed him on their first meeting.
Hypocrite: He really wants to drive the point home that The President is a sociopath...despite, y'know, the fact that he's a tyrannical dictator with billions of lives taken, with the icing on the cake being his reaction to blowing up earth: "Whoops."
Even more pronounced in his text-adventure-style autobiography, in which he extols on how his own sociopathic tendencies are to be lauded. Granted, he has nothing but a high opinion of himself.
While Zinyak tries to paint himself as a good guy (at least in comparison to the Boss), the biggest and perhaps most defining difference between them is this: Loyalty to the crew. During one mission, the Boss admits that he would gladly take a bullet for any member of his crew. Zinyak, however, treats his underlings, including his closest and most loyal underling, as though they were disposable.
Klingons Love Shakespeare: Fascinated by Earth literature, theater and classical music. Particularly enamored of Shakespeare and Jane Austen, claiming that her works in particular inspired his rise to power. It turns out that he actually abducted Austen and kept her as a Human Popsicle. She's the game's narrator.
Shadow Archetype: To the Boss. Both are self-made individuals who rose from nothing to fame and power through determination, guile, and the application of extreme violence. Keith David lampshades the similarities between them in a speech in the mission "He Lives," also adding that they both are fans of Jane Austen.
Smug Snake: Nearly every word out of his mouth consists of him saying how he's better than you. Even as the Boss is kicking his ass, he doesn't stop with how your defeat is inevitable. Taken to ridiculous levels when he still doesn't stop even as the Boss is ripping off his head. His text-adventure-style autobiography half consists of how brilliant and peerless a commander he is.
The Sociopath: The collectibles reveal that he was considered as such by several Zin during his early military career.
Teleporters and Transporters: He has some sort of teleportation device on his wrist, which he uses to abduct Shaundi in "The Saints Wing" and in both of his fights with the Boss.
Troll: Angelus.The Joker. That dude on the Internet who ignores what someone has done and blames everybody else. This dude outshines them all. From wanting the Saints to suffer via being forced to live their worst nightmares to hijacking a radio station to mess with Boss and Pierce, everything Zinyak does is essentially to cause misery to people. Only Terumi Yuuki can match him in terms of dickassery.
Unreliable Narrator: While his description of his homeworld paints the Zin as boorish and crude, remember that this is from an autobiography written by a sociopathic intellectual with a big ego.
Villain Ball: The idiocy of Zinyak leaving the data clusters lying around simulated Steelport is lampshaded in the mission that introduces them. He compounds his error by failing to get rid of the remainder once it becomes clear that the Boss and the Saints are using them to undermine his control of the Simulation.
The simulation AI gained sentience and the personality of a ruthless dominatrix. She was originally set to be the villain of a Saints Row: The Third DLC that was scrapped and now appears as the Big Bad of... a Saints Row IV DLC.
Bondage Is Bad: She takes the form of a dominatrix and attepts to completely take over the entire simulation and turn everyone in it into her pets. Given that she is up against the Saints it doesn't go too well.
Weaksauce Weakness: Because his powers come from destroying and mangling the holiday spirit he can be harmed by Christmas (or any other holiday) cheer. The Boss actually defeats him by giving him presents and dropping him on a Christmas tree.