The act of being a video game character is a bit of an odd one. You spend all day killing things, all night healing from wounds that should have killed you, and there's a better than eighty percent chance that your tomboy female friend is a lost princess
. But what's a guy to do, eh?
Playable character types:
- Adventure Duo
A serious main character coupled with a weird or quirky partner.
- An Adventurer Is You
A description of the class-based systems common to many Role Playing Games.
- Bare-Fisted Monk
A character who excels in melee attacks without wielding weapons.
- The Beastmaster
A type of character who uses the assistance of an animal, force of nature, or just some sort of not-highly-sentient creature to help them fight.
- Black Mage
Magic user who specializes in offensive magic.
- Bouncing Battler
A character whose primary form of attack is to jump or bounce off obstacles and enemies.
- Bratty Half-Pint
Snarky self-important kid who's usually the youngest in the party.
- Child Mage
The main magic user is the youngest in the group.
- Cipher Scything
Blank slate characters always get the short end of the stick in adapted works.
- Combat Medic
Although he's the main healer and buffer, he can also dish out damage.
- Combat and Support
The two roles video game characters often divide each other into when in groups.
- Competitive Balance
The various character types in competitive games need to be balanced so no one character is automatically better.
- Confusion Fu
A character whose main advantage is their unpredictability.
- Critical Hit Class
A class or character's strategy is based on getting critical hits.
- Crutch Character
Early game playable character who starts out powerful, but whose usefulness declines.
- Cute Bruiser
A young girl who has Super Strength.
- The Engineer
A character who specializes in the use and application of machines and technology. Usually a support unit, but many times quite capable of combat.
- Elite Tweak
A character or class that can be very effective, but needs a lot of work or strategy to reach its potential.
- Fantasy Character Classes
The most common character classes in a medieval fantasy setting.
- Featureless Protagonist
An Ageless, Faceless, Gender Neutral, Culturally Ambiguous Adventure Person is you!
- Non-Entity General
The player is a general or commander in a strategy game who may not actually even exist.
- Fighter, Mage, Thief
The three most common character classes for Western RPGs.
- Fragile Speedster
A character who's very fast, but has low defense.
- Glacier Waif
A character of thin build who's nevertheless extremely strong and slow.
- Glass Cannon
A character who is strong but can't take a lot of damage.
- A God is You
Games that star a protagonist who's actually a god or who has godlike powers.
- Gradual Grinder
A character type that deals damage over time, wearing the enemy down.
- Guest-Star Party Member
Someone who joins your party temporarily as a "guest".
- Healing Hands
A character who has the ability to heal others.
- Heroic Mime
A main character who never speaks.
- Hero Unit
A unit, usually in a Real-Time Strategy game, that represents the player or a major character in the game's story on the battlefield.
- Immobile Player Character
When a Player Character has incredibly limited movement.
- Item Caddy
A character whose skills revolve around using items.
A character who has good strength, speed, and defense, but is not great in any category.
- Master of None
The Jack-of-All-Stats where the end result is an almost useless character, since their mediocre skills are never useful enough to be chosen over a specialist.
- Job System
Eastern RPG system whereby classes have distinct equipment and abilities but can be changed at any time.
- Joke Character
Characters, often in the form of Easter Eggs, deliberately unbalanced in the negative sense.
- Kid Hero
Slaying dragons and beating down goblins, but he still has a teddy bear when he goes to sleep.
- Lady of War
A female fighter who retains an air of grace and reserve not usually associated with violence.
- Lightning Bruiser
A character who has very good strength, speed, and defense.
- Mage Marksman
An archer or gunner who also delves in sorcery.
- Magically Inept Fighter
A fighter with great physical ability but lacking skills in the magic department.
- Magic Knight
A wizard who can also swordfight or a swordfighter who can also use magic.
- Mascot with Attitude
A snarky Funny Animal with kickin' powers and improbable jumping abilities.
- Master of All
A (usually broken) character with better stats than anyone.
- Master of Unlocking
Opening doors is an art, don'tcha know.
- Mechanically Unusual Class
A character class whose mechanics are unusual in comparison to its fellow classes.
- Mechanically Unusual Fighter
A Fighting Game character with a bizarre playstyle and mechanics compared to others.
- Mighty Glacier
He's got great strength, but he isn't all that fast.
- The Minion Master
Summon Mooks to do the job for you!
- Modern Day & Sci-Fi RPG Class Equivalents
A collection of character classes or equivalents of such for non-fantasy RPG settings.
- Monster Allies
Where monsters fight alongside the humans in RPGs.
- Mutually Exclusive Party Members
Several party members who, for whatever reason, cannot all be in the same party at the same time.
- Mystical Waif
A young girl with a mysterious past who the villains are trying to exploit and the heroes are trying to protect.
- Non-Player Companion
An NPC who follows and assists the player character throughout the game.
- One-Man Army
You're the video game hero. It's perfectly normal for you to go around killing thousands of Mooks.
- Optional Party Member
Someone who may not join your party if you don't fulfill the requirements to get them.
- Overrated and Underleveled
A character introduced as being really powerful ends up, statistics-wise, as being weaker than the main character.
- Platforming Pocket Pal
An adventuring companion in an action game who, for whatever reason, is not hindered by the action segments.
- Player Character
A character controlled by you, the player.
- Player Mooks
Nameless, personality-less characters that make up your team.
- Power-Up Mount
An animal that the main character can ride on and is beneficial in some way.
- Promoted to Playable
A former Boss or NPC becomes playable.
- Protagonist Without a Past
You just sort of popped into being in the first village.
- Rebellious Princess
She's had enough of being pampered and wants to get down and dirty with the monster fighting!
- The Red Mage
A magician capable of casting spells from two different or even mutually exclusive schools of magic.
- Required Party Member
Someone who you have to have in your group, usually due to plot reasons.
- Schr÷dinger's Player Character
The game offers multiple characters to choose from with various backstories, but only the character you choose as your PC ever appears in the game.
- Secret Character
A bonus character that the casual player may never see.
- Skill Gate Characters
Fighting Game characters that are a challenge to newcomers, but those with experience will easily mop the floor with them.
- Solo Class
Classes capable of going alone where others are forced to team up.
- Space Marine
Standard FPS hero: A military man (often in bulky armor), who wields lots of big guns and kills lots of aliens.
- Squishy Wizard
Phenomenal cosmic power, itty bitty life bar.
- Starter Mon
If you want To Be a Master of Mons, you have to start somewhere.
- Stone Wall
A character with extremely high defense but lame offensive capabilities.
- Support Party Member
A party member whose' primary abilities are mostly non-offensive.
- Sword and Sorcerer
When a physical fighter and magic user team up.
- Team Pet
The default mascot of the party and usually the most outlandish of the bunch.
- Third-Person Seductress
An implausibly curvy, twenty-something woman in a Stripperiffic outfit, who obeys the commands of the fellow behind the controller.
- The Turret Master
A character with the ability to summon a stationary turret that attacks enemies or an object that fulfills a similar role.
- Tomboy Princess
A princess who behaves in a tomboyish manner.
- Utility Party Member
The character you keep in your party for their non-combat skills.
- White Mage
Magic-user who specializes in healing and support magic.
- Wild Man
A usually shaggy, musclebound and underdressed character who looks like he just came out of the jungle.
Fighting Game characters (may or may not be playable):
- Assist Character
A non-playable character who assists a playable one.
- Balance, Speed, Strength Trio
The three most common character types for Beat 'em Up and Hack and Slash.
- Character Roster Global Warming
The series' character roster increases over time, but the number of Mighty Glacier characters is kept constant.
- Ditto Fighter
A character who copies the moveset of the other characters, sometimes with the added catch that the moveset is chosen randomly.
- Fighting Clown
A character that looks and acts wackier to the rest of the cast, but actually plays like a normal character.
- Guest Fighter
A character from another franchise who shows up in a Fighting Game.
- Husky Russkie
Is bik, stronk, and dreenks vodka.
- Moveset Clone
Two characters are given equal or similar abilities/appearances, and often wind up as being the main characters for the series.
- Perfect-Play A.I.
An AI which continually walks forward, dodges or blocks all attacks, and attacks flawlessly once it reaches its target.
Stock Fighting Game character whose skillset includes a fireball and uppercut and often wear a karate gi.
Enemy character types (excluding Boss Battles):
- Asteroids Monster
A creature of significant size that, when killed, splits into several miniature versions of itself.
- Border Patrol
A monster or other hazard introduced specifically to prevent the player from wandering too far without resorting to the immersion-breaking Invisible Wall.
- Boss in Mook Clothing
A "normal battle" with an enemy that, as it turns out, can wipe the floor with you.
- Chest Monster
An enemy or hazard that has disguised itself to look like something positive, like a chest.
- Clairvoyant Security Force
Manages to always appear the second you try to steal something.
An enemy in the shape of an animated cloud that attacks with wind and lightning.
- Degraded Boss
Once you beat the boss, it comes back as a normal enemy later.
- Drop-In Nemesis
Where an enemy or obstacle comes out of nowhere and kills you, generally in a cutscene.
- Elemental Embodiment
When the elements that are the basic building blocks of the universe get up and come for you.
- Enemy Summoner
An enemy who casts spells which bring additional enemies into combat, while causing some damage itself.
- Everything Trying to Kill You
Almost everything is out for your blood.
- Evil Chancellor
The helpful and suspiciously toadying assistant to the monarchy whose morality is usually inverse to the head of state.
- Flying Seafood Special
Fish that float in the air. And generally try to kill you.
- Giant Hands of Doom
A character who fights only with giant hands.
- Goddamned Bats
Enemies that don't pose much of a threat on their own, but can frustrate, annoy, and get in your way when working together.
- Demonic Spiders
Enemies that frustrate you by killing you in unfair ways, which make them innately more dangerous than other normal enemies.
- Ledge Bats
Enemies that knock you back in the middle of jumps, often to your death.
- Metal Slime
A monster that appears and runs away very quickly, is hard to hit, and gives very good rewards.
- Wall Master
Monsters that lurk within the environment and never fully appear until you walk close to them, at which point they suddenly lunge out and try to grab you.
- The Goomba
The most basic enemy in the game, has a simple movement pattern, and is reassuringly easy to beat.
- Half-Hearted Henchman
A normal henchman who's lazy, unmotivated, or otherwise unwilling to do his job.
- Incredibly Durable Enemies
When the basic mook is an unstoppable killing machine, you know you're in a difficult game.
- Increasingly Lethal Enemy
When an enemy gets harder to beat if the fight goes on for too long.
- Invincible Minor Minion
A weak enemy who is nevertheless completely impossible to harm in any way.
- Invisible Monsters
You can't see them, but they can probably hurt you.
- Killer Rabbit
Any monster that's far more dangerous than it looks.
A slang term for the hordes of standard-issue, disposable bad guys whom the hero regularly fights and defeats.
- Personal Space Invader
A monster who grabs onto you and must be shaken off.
- Pi˝ata Enemy
An enemy target or victim in a video game sought out by the player because they are (relatively) easy to kill and have a very high cash payout.
- Puppet Fighter
A character who can control one or more entities separate from itself.
- Raising the Steaks
Dead animals coming back to life with the intention of killing you.
- Rat Stomp
Finally, you get to the adventuring part! But first, fight some rats.
- Roaming Enemy
An enemy which appears randomly under various circumstances.
- Savage Setpiece
A character that is peaceful to your character unless he attacks it. Then it demolishes you.
- Segmented Serpent
An enemy which is made up of lots of mostly identical segments, and moves like a worm or snake.
- The Spiny
A Platform Game enemy that will damage or kill you if you try to jump on it.
- Standard FPS Enemies
Those generic baddies seen in nearly every FPS you've ever played.
- Stock Monsters
Those generic baddies seen in nearly every RPG you've ever played.
- Teleporting Keycard Squad
Whenever you take something important, a slough of new enemies suddenly rushes in.
- Underground Monkey
Exactly the same as a regular monkey - but underground, and therefore has better stats.
- Underrated and Overleveled
A character whom the plot provides no reason to be particularly strong turns out to be quite powerful in statistical terms when they join your party.
- The Unfought
A major antagonist who you don't fight in the actual game.
- Unique Enemy
An enemy that only shows up once in the whole game, but is otherwise fairly unremarkable.
- Waddling Head
A stock monster that resembles a colored oval with eyes and feet.
- Weaponized Offspring
A creature gives birth to Cannon Fodder as a defense mechanism.
You see lots of holes in the ground: you know you're going to have to fight a bunch of monsters that pop up, attack, and pop back in.
- And Now for Someone Completely Different
- Balance, Power, Skill, Gimmick
A setup of four playable choices with a balanced choice, one choice at one end of a stat scale, one choice at the other end, and one choice different from all three.
- Character Select Forcing
The game forces you to choose different characters.
- Game-Over Man
A character shown on the Game Over screen.
- Lady Not-Appearing-in-This-Game
A sexy female in a game's promotional material who's not actually in the game itself.
- Live Item
A character or creature that the game treats as an item.
- The Missingno.
A video game character whose existence is due to a glitch, rather than them being deliberately coded into the game.
- Pet Interface
An interface in which you are given a sidekick, usually a pet, that acts as a guide/virtual pet of sorts in the world.
- Prestigious Player Title
You and your fellow players are yourselves, but you're given a fancy title to call yourselves by.
- Reviving Enemy
An enemy which can only be dealt with temporarily.
- Series Mascot
A character, creature, etc which is heavily associated with a fictional universe, to the point of being the (official or unofficial) mascot.
- Training Dummy
Some (usually) immortal character that you can return to, to practice your moves on.
- Two Guys and a Girl
The main character and his Rival Turned Evil spend most of the game fighting over the girl.
- With a Friend and a Stranger
The game starts off with the hero, his or her childhood friend, and another person, often a girl, from out of nowhere who needs his help.