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Cloning Blues / Video Games

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  • Advance Wars:
    • Black Hole has a tendency to enjoy making clones of your commanding officers and pitting them against you towards the endgame. The clones have all the same statistical points of their counterparts, but their personalities are seriously lacking; they regularly proclaim, in an almost morose and self-defeating way, that their only purpose is to take orders and fight. Afterwards they're invariably destroyed. Except for the Andy Clone, who expresses that he hoped that he was true to his counterpart's personality.
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    • Days of Ruin provides a different version, in which Big Bad Mad Scientist Caulder/Stolos is a Truly Single Parent and views his clone children as expendable minions and test subjects, as he can always replace them if they die. Isabella/Catleia turns out to be a 'backup' of one of the original four, who was killed in one of his experiments.
    • It gets better: Even Caulder/Stolos is a clone of the original, and it seems highly likely that the side-effects of cloning are partly responsible for his insanity.
  • The King of Fighters:
    • The series loves clones so much that there have been at least 5 or so clones of Kyo Kusanagi running around at one point (Kyo-1, Kyo-2, K', Krizalid, K9999, and Kusanagi). There was also the Opposite-Sex Clone Kula, and one of the bosses, Zero, had a clone who was the boss in the game preceding him. The series is inconsistent about the use of the term, however, as K' is actually a normal human modified to have Kyo's powers and there is argument over whether Kula is something similar due to Flip-Flop of God. note 
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    • Additionally, whereas Kusanagi was originally implied in concept artwork to be yet another Kyo clone created by NESTS, 2003 retconned his origins to being an illusionary construct of a Brainwashed and Crazy Chizuru Kagura's Yata Mirror.
    • 2002: Unlimited Match adds two more clones: Nameless (K9999's replacement, a human who had the DNA of both Kyo and K' genetically inserted into his body and is known as the 9999th K' clone) and Isolde (Nameless' "dead" note  love interest and a member of the Anti-K' Project that spawned Kula).
      • This is very much mocked with the various clones of Kula in M.U.G.E.N, with Sula Crystal deemed the most focused of the bunch.
  • Kingdom Hearts:
  • Malediction is started by Morgan creating a bunch of magic clones of himself. Said clones run off with a piece of his powers each, and now Morgan has to track them down to get his powers back.
  • It turns out in Over Blood that both Milly and Raz are clones. The labs had actually been cloning loads of Raz's as Super Soldiers and to look after her. Milly is actually the clone of the original Raz's wife, who died. Both of them argue with the real Raz that they aren't simply clones and can't be forced to do whatever their originals did/what Raz wants them to do.
  • Metal Gear:
  • Street Fighter:
    • In Street Fighter II, depending on which plot twist you're in, BBEG M. Bison (known as Vega in Japan) has an army of clone soldiers, including Juni, Juli and Cammy. However, the term "clone" is used inconsistently — it's been stated, for example, that Juni and Juli are girls kidnapped from Germany — and they're probably only "clones" in the same sense that Saddam Hussein had body doubles. Cammy, at least, does actually look like Bison, aside from the gender difference.
    • More appear in Street Fighter IV; a factory of backup bodies in the event of M. Bison's death. At least two playable characters (Abel and Seth) and one NPC (Ed, the boy rescued by Balrog) are revealed to be such clones.
    • Ed would then reappear Street Fighter V, having undergone Rapid Aging from childhood to his late teens/early twenties (presumably to reach his prime in a short period of time and thus serve as a physically suitable vessel for Bison). Another newcomer, Falke, also serves as a replacement body for Bison and likewise experienced a rapidly accelerated aging process. She even resembles a female Ed, as she's either his Opposite-Sex Clone or was at least (partially) created from the same genetic material as him. (Her introductory blog from Capcom Germany noting that Falke is "of German descent" muddies things in the vein of the above Dolls.)
  • Mortal Kombat:
    • Mileena has no problem with being a clone of Kitana. Still, she utterly despises her "sister" and her fondest wish is Kitana's death, possibly out of a demented belief that she's more worthy of Kitana's existence that Kitana herself. (Many sources have claimed she is the closest thing Shao Kahn has to an actual daughter, and she often says so herself in a few of them, so in her deranged way of thinking, Kitana is the fake who has to be eliminated.)
    • Played with in Mortal Kombat X, where Mileena is shown to have made a life of her own. However, she has issues with her own copies. That gets fixed in her Arcade Tower ending, where the Mileena clones share a Hive Mind.
  • Super Robot Wars Original Generation 2:
    • The game gives us Wodan Ymir, a W Number android based both physically and mentally on Sanger Zonvolt, who died in the Shadow Mirror universe. Outside the fourth wall, the character was created so that the game could use Sanger's incarnation in Super Robot Wars Alpha Gaiden as the "Sword of Magus" without it feeling wrong based on his characterisation and development in the previous Original Generation game.
    • Also, Wodan resolves his Cloning Blues at the conclusion of the Earth Cradle arc, and not only is it badass, it's pretty damn touching. Even Sanger, the original, wept Manly Tears at Wodan's death as a true warrior fighting for his cause.
    • Ingram Plissken. There have been so many clones of him made by the Balmar empire in order to keep possessing over the Time Diver, that a lot of them have identity issues.
  • Tales of the Abyss:
    • The game has an analogue of cloning known as fomicry, which uses pure magic to create an identical copy of an original at the time of replication (dodging the aging issue) and without any memories. Most of the game's replicas use many of the pitfalls of this trope, including plenty of wangst about not being real. In one case it's even two-sided between replica and original: Luke's Tomato in the Mirror moment when he realizes that not only is he a replica, but that he was created just so his original could be kidnapped without anyone noticing, and Asch's continual resentment that his replica stole his life, and is in his own eyes an unworthy successor to his normal identity.
    • It's also worth noting that replication has a tendency of permanently weakening the person being cloned, as demonstrated by the cheagle original and clone. If that isn't a good reason to have being-replicated Cloning Blues, what is?
    • Aside from this, however, the game does take a serious look at the Cloning Blues trope, including the Replacement Goldfish factor, and the cast generally treat the replicas with the respect they're due as living beings. It would be hard for them not to, what with the protagonist being one and all...
  • In Freedom Force, the futuristic robot hero Microwave has the ability to generate weak clones of himself, and the mad villain Deja Vu can create clones of anyone, from civilians to himself to even the game's main hero Minuteman. The final boss Timemaster generates "temporal twins" of himself to besiege the heroes as well. As this game is based on the carefree Silver Age of comics, nobody bats an eye at any of this and no serious moral issues come into play.
  • In Neverwinter Nights: Hordes of the Underdark, it appears that the mad wizard Halaster has been taken captive by the drow. But after the player kills the drow keeping him captive, another Halaster teleports in, and informs you that you ruined his brilliant plan to trap the Big Bad using a clone. The two Halasters then begin to bicker about who is the original, and who is the clone — all the while rhyming. The funny part is that normally it's done via simulacrum and that in canon Halaster used to have multiple semi-autonomous body replicas all over the Undermountain and control them more or less at will.
  • Mass Effect:
    • Miranda Lawson of Mass Effect 2 is a heavily-modified clone of a ridiculously rich businessman with two duplicates of his X chromosome, and has some major confidence issues on the subject. She also has a genetic twin sister, who is (quite realistically, actually) sixteen years younger and an exact clone. She has fewer issues, primarily because she doesn't know that Miranda exists (Unless you take the Paragon ending to her Loyalty Quest). Lair of the Shadow Broker adds more to this, as it turns out she's infertile, most likely as a result of her genetic engineering; whether this was intentional on her father's part or if it was the fluke that led him to declare Miranda a failure is open to interpretation.
    • Shepard has this after their resurrection by Cerberus in the second game, even asking Jacob early on if they were a clone, though Jacob states that since he saw their "dead" body filled with wires and tubes, he's pretty sure they're not a clone and Shepard was instead reconstructed. The exact details of what the Lazarus Project actually did however are left vague.
    • In Mass Effect 3, files recovered during the assault on the Cerberus base leave the question even more open-ended, as it was revealed that Shepard was actually braindead when their body was recovered. Cue Shepard having a moment of existential crisis at whether or not they are who they think they are.
      Shepard: I don't remember anything. Maybe they really just fixed me... Or maybe I'm just a high-tech VI that thinks it's Commander Shepard.
    • The Citadel DLC has the villain be revealed to be a clone of Shepard, who lacks their memories and was created by Cerberus simply to serve as "spare parts" if Shepard ever got injured. Part of the clone's resentment towards Shepard seems to stem from the Illusive Man preferring to bring back a corpse, rather than use a copy.
  • Zero, the star of two series in Capcom's Mega Man, is cloned twice, once in each series:
    • Played straight in Mega Man X2, where Sigma builds a Black Zero, claiming it to be X's real pal, seeking revenge. However, the real Zero comes in and easily destroys the clone.
      Zero: You should have studied the blueprints closer, Sigma! There is only one Zero!
    • Subverted in Mega Man Zero 3: The Hero Zero is the clone, and Ax-Crazy Omega is the original. However, the clone has Zero's real soul, still making him the real Zero, albeit in a different body.
    • Mega Man Zero also features Copy-X, who was built as an El Cid Ploy. However, it isn't really him — the real X sacrificed himself to seal up a dangerous enemy much earlier, so the clone, with an incomplete version of X's programming, ends up virtually turning evil. That said, it's X who does most of the angsting (over what the copy is doing in his name); Copy-X is utterly convinced that as a "perfect" copy of X, he's doing exactly what X would do and thus cannot be wrong.
  • Ever 17:
    • The character in question is referred to as a clone and views the 'original' as a parent. The two are immensely similar in personality and thought processes, but due to slight differences in how they were raised, their beliefs and behaviors are slightly different. The older of the two has grown since the time when they were nearly indistinguishable and become quite different. There is no social stigma (cloning is legal here), nor any angsting over being a copy. The clone does wonder what they mean to the original, though.
    • A better, straighter example, comes from Never7, the previous member of the trilogy. It's slightly further in the future, so cloning is still legal. However, the clone in question has a deep psychological issue about being a clone, such issues with other clones are discussed, and some characters are shown to have a subtle prejudice against clones (one character, upon finding out the person is a clone and that another particular character hates clones, reacts by pointing out that cloning is legal and an increasingly normal practice, instead of defending the person's humanity).
  • Destroy All Humans! is centred around cloning, but clones are also used when Crypto dies during gameplay. Each clone has a number, with Crypto, starting at 137 because 136 was shot down near Area 42. While each clone is made after the other dies, there is no personal difference between them besides their numbers and in the beginning of the game, after learning of 136's disappearance, 137 wants to go rescue himself and confuses the pronouns a lot. When he does find his remains, he laments his loss referring to 136 as himself and takes revenge on the humans for killing him.
  • Astaroth from the Soul Series undergoes this during Soulcalibur III and before Soulcalibur IV, when he learns that his template was Rock he goes on a berserk rampage, destroying his creation place and eventually finding Rock and almost killing him.
  • Tabula Rasa:
    • All of a player's characters on one server are clones of each other to explain why they all have the last name and share a supposedly rare special ability. Despite that, clones don't share memories by default. Players must earn special credits to use the ubertech necessary to share experience and training from one character to a new clone; even then, there can be differences in how that knowledge is applied. Clones can also look different or even be a different gender.
    • Prior to their introduction, it was stated that AFS scientists were working on the creation of Half Human Hybrids using this technology. In Deployment 9 they were released, playing all the related tropes straight.
  • It is suspected that the protagonist in the game Portal is a clone. The antagonist taunts her saying that her brain is "permanently backed up" on a computer, and there are hints indicating that death is not a particular aspect of a failure. In addition, the game contains scribblings and other artifacts left by previous participants of the survival courses, and the game does not exclude the possibility that some of the participants were just previous instances of the PC.
  • In Fallout 3, Vault 108 is full of blood, skeletons, and homicidal maniacs only capable of saying their name, Gary. An Apocalyptic Log reveals that the Vault was meant to research cloning, but in all 54 cases, the "Gary's" turned out to be progressively hostile to the other Vault residents. After the Vault's scientists tried to kill a few of the clones to make room for more tests, the clones rebelled and butchered everyone else.
  • Halo:
    • Master Chief and all the other Spartan-IIs were kidnapped as six year old children to begin their training. To prevent any questions from being asked, they were all flash-cloned; the parents got the clones. In the Halo universe, cloning single organs is simple, but cloning a full human isn't; flash clones are born with no memory, and tend to deteriorate into mindless vegetables who die in a few months (though a "lucky" few survived into their teens). So, as far as the Spartans' parents know, their children all suddenly suffered major brain/nerve/organ damage and died tragically. Only a handful of Spartan trainees ever found out about this, with two of them killing themselves after finding out the truth. The true tragedy of this is explored more thoroughly in the ARGs I Love Bees and HUNT the TRUTH, and the Halo Legends short Homecoming.
    • Karen Traviss's Kilo-Five trilogy also explores the tragedy of the flash-cloning program, including the plight of the clones themselves. However, the trilogy puts the blame for this solely on the shoulders of program head Dr. Halsey, even though earlier media had strongly implied that she got approval for this from her superiors, including the head of ONI herself. Instead, said head of ONI claims she had no idea Halsey was going to go the clone route, though it's possible she was just covering her ass; post-Kilo-Five media, like the aforementioned Hunt the Truth, seem to have gone with the "ONI was just covering its ass" interpretation.
  • F.E.A.R.:
    • The Replica don't go through a whole lot of angst about their cloned nature because ATC deliberately designed them to have limited cognitive capabilities and independent thought processes. The Replica themselves are vat-grown, mass-produced, disfigured, inhuman-looking beings that spend most of their lives in stasis inside small pods until activated for combat; once activated, they show all the typical range of human emotions, including surprise, anger, and fear - albeit mixed in with a terrifying single-mindedness and absolute loyalty.
    • Played for laughs in the trailer for the Reborn DLC for F.E.A.R. 2. "I may be a clone now, but I sure ain't your brother! Yeeaaaaaaahhhhhhh!"
  • Neo Contra has its moment when Bill Rizer finds out that he was really just part of an experiment to replicate a legendary hero... Sounds familiar?
  • Parasite Eve 2. The Eve/Aye clone is a little girl in a research facility where even her damned toys were designed to frustrate and antagonise her — pegs too big for their holes and building blocks with rounded sides that wouldn't stack; but she did have one ordinary, well-loved teddy bear.
  • In P.N.03 the main character, Vanessa Z. Schneider comes across a clone of herself during one of the main story missions. At the end of the game, it's revealed that the client paying her is another clone. It's slightly subverted in that the original person is unknown and that while Vanessa is somewhat disturbed the client knew about it from the beginning and doesn't mind.
  • At the end of zOMG!, Labtech X reveals his plot to create an army of Animated Humongous Mecha and take over Gaia...and also his motivation: he's a clone of Johnny K. Gambino, who abandoned him in favor of his naturally-born son Gino.
  • In Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 the protagonist is a clone of the original Starkiller from the first game. He's not particularly happy about this.
  • BlazBlue:
    • Noel Vermillion/Mu-12, Nu-13, and Lambda-11 are all clones of a young girl named Saya. While they don't express much angst over it, the original Saya's brothers, Jin and Ragna, most certainly do.
    • Though this trope does befall Noel Vermillion in the sequel. And it's exploited to hell and back by the Big Bad Hazama who's great sceme is to Break the Cutie, make her embrace her Super-Powered Evil Side and go on an omnicidal rampage. In the end it takes a violent intervention from Ragna combined with a speech about how Clones Are People, Too to finally snap poor Noel out of it.
  • In Tomb Raider: Underworld, Croft Manor is destroyed by a seemingly sadistic clone of Lara, created by Jacqueline Natla. Lara tangles with her doppelganger more than once, but finds later that she and the copy think a lot alike—the copy's simply stuck under Natla's control. Lara manages to free the doppelganger of her mental domination and then sics her on Natla. It doesn't end well for Natla.
  • In Baldur's Gate II, you run into a character called the "Enraged Clone" while escaping Irenicus' dungeon. The clone is completely insane, thinks you are Irenicus, and attacks you. She declares that she could never be "her" no matter how often memories and feelings are forced on her. Judging by the other tanks in the room she is far from the first attempt. We don't find out who the poor clone is supposed to replace until much, much later.
  • Hitman:
    • Subverted. The protagonist uncovers at the end of Codename 47 that he's the end-result of a dedicated cloning program. His origin is cause for significant strife later in his life, but he's never all that choked up over it - he just kills everyone.
    • Blood Money has Dr. Ordmeier's cloning research fall into the hands of various organizations. However, 47 stole the original notes to prevent further Agents from being made, and so the clones are imperfect. All of them are albino, they tend to suffer severe physical ailments, and none of them live longer than a few years.
  • All the robot personalities aboard Starship Titanic are copies of real peoples personalities stuck in art deco robot bodies and placed on a doomed starship, after working their way up though speak your weight machines and on screen help.
  • Hell MOO has almost all of the characters as clones; in fact, the majority of the population of Freedom City was alive before the nuclear apocalypse and have been unable to die because the cloning banks still work and just shuffle their consciousness into a fresh body every time they day. Even the suicide booth provided is useless because it only provides a few seconds of peace before being harshly thrown back into the world. As long as the cloning continues, the people of post-apocalypse Freedom City are trapped in their little slice of hell and unable to get out.
  • Subverted/Averted depending on the server in the BYOND game Space Station 13. Doctors are encouraged to tell newly cloned patients that they were "in an accident" and "bumped their head" and "barely survived, thank God" to save this from happening. Played straight if a new doctor screws up and decides to tell the patient. On other, less RP oriented servers, cloning is just seen as a means to an end, and the implications are largely ignored.
  • Borderlands 2: The Hyperion Corporation advises you not to think about the fact that the current you is just a digital reconstruction of the original.
  • In Sword of the Stars II, it is possible to research "Replicants", where mass cloning is used to help populate colonies. It speeds population growth rate, but causes morale problems apparently due to difficulties in integrating Replicants with "originals".
  • The Swapper:
    • The game discusses this heavily, because gameplay revolves around a device that creates clones and allows the user to Body Surf between them. Puzzles involve creating lots of clones and sometimes sacrificing them to solve problems. This leads to heavy discussion between the main characters because nobody is sure what the device is truly doing when it "swaps souls about."
    • Near the end you discover that YOU in fact, are a clone that has lived long enough to develop more of a consciousness.
  • Victor Donovan, the main antagonist of the Dead or Alive series of fighting games, has an army of clones of Mugen Tenshin Clan kunoichi Kasumi, whom they captured and extracted her DNA following the first Dead or Alive tournament. The first clone, Kasumi Alpha, served Donovan loyally until he experimented on her further and turned her into the psychotic and rogue "Alpha-152" (the final boss of the fourth and fifth games). Kasumi Alpha is a playful and childlike clone while Alpha-152 is vengeful and bloodthirsty by comparison. The arcade version of Dead or Alive 5: Ultimate will debut a new clone of Kasumi, called "Phase-4".
  • Dark Pit from Kid Icarus: Uprising is not happy about being a clone. Borne from a magic mirror that creates Evil Knockoffs, he spends the entirety of level six running away because he doesn't see why he has to fight Pit, then spends the rest of the game as a Tsundere trying to prove himself as his own man not shackled to Pit's legacy (though that doesn't stop the two from teaming up). Dark Pit's Divergent Character Evolution uses a curious inversion where the more comfortable Dark Pit is with his existence and the more he makes himself his own man, the more similar to regular Pit his fighting style becomes: in level six he tries "kiting" the player as well as outright hiding, but later in the game you get to play as Dark Pit, and his style is as identical to Pit's as you want to make it.
  • A very important part of the plot in Akatsuki Blitzkampf relays on cloning, and it tends to have very bad consequences for said clone:
    • The Elektrosoldats are clones of the local Smug Snake Adler (as if their looks weren't a giveaway) equipped with Blitz Engines. And being one of these sucks: the playable Elektrosoldat has serious problems with internal injuries.
    • Senke (Kanae's superior in the Japanese Army) and In Fu (Wei and Marilyn's Triad boss) are clones of Murakumo that he uses to manipulate their groups. In Fu's murder kicks off Wei and Marilyn's story modes.
    • In Ein-Eins Perfektewelt, there is Ein-Eins himself. Who is is the Sole Survivor of his clone batch.
  • In Styx: Master of Shadows, The Styx that the player controls turns out to be but an expandable clone the original Styx created to help further his own goal of obtaining the Heart of the world tree.
    • The clone realized that all his thoughts and purposes about obtaining the heart of the world tree are not actually his own thoughts, they are all orders from the original Styx as he plays the clone like a puppet. The clone is so pissed about this prospect he sets out to kill and take over the original Styx, and decides to oppose every goal Styx has just because those are the only thoughts he is certain to be his own.
  • Fallout 4 has a mechanical example in the form of Nick Valentine. He's a discarded prototype Synth who woke up in a garbage dump one day with the memories and personality of a pre-War detective who volunteered for some brain-scanning science experiment. Nick has since made a place for himself in the Commonwealth as a Private Detective, and a good one at that, but for all his accomplishments he still agonizes about not being his own man, even though he's grateful toward the original Detective Valentine for giving him his skills and ethics. His personal quest involves hunting down a (ghoulified) mob boss that Detective Valentine was never able to bring to justice, if only to tie up the last loose end from the "original" Nick's life.'
  • In Horizon Zero Dawn this turns out to be Aloy's backstory. She is really a clone of the original scientist that created the world she inhabits, as a last desperate attempt to save humanity when the AI running this system fails. The AI's last act was to create Aloy as a means to reboot itself, as her DNA would allow her to literally open doors that no one else could. The fact that she had no biological parents was the cause of her growing up as an outcast.
  • This is part of a side plot for Fenix in Legacy of the Void in StarCraft 2. At first, he believes he is Fenix from the original Starcraft games, which both Artanis and the player know is false as Fenix died. As time goes on, Fenix begins to realize this fact, and the fact that he is not a dragoon (a robotic suit used for heavily injured Protoss that still allows for combat), and is actually a mechanical reproduction that had the memories of Fenix downloaded into the body. Artanis assures him that he deserves the title of Fenix, that he is indeed a noble warrior with the heart of the original, however Fenix decides to choose his own path, and comes out of this depression with a new outlook and name: Talandar. The epilogue states that Talandar became a leader to the other purifiers who, like him, are just robotic duplicates downloaded with the memories and personality of other deceased Protoss warriors.
    • This is referenced in Co-op mode. There is a wholly useless 11 mineral and vespene upgrade that researches in just a few seconds. it changes Fenix's onscreen name to Talandar for the remainder of the match.
  • In The Council of Hanwell, this is played straight with the protagonist who was supposed to carry on the Doctor's work. It is stated you share 99% of the Doctor's DNA with the implication that the other 1% comes from the anomalies.
  • In Phantasy Star Online 2, Klariskrays III gets hit with this hard in EPISODE TWO. As the more sympathetic members of the Council of Six battle the other half of the Council (better known as the Trio of Heroes), Luther decides he's had enough of all the games and sends in a gathering of Klariskrays to eliminate them. Seeing all of them breaks the poor kid and after she begs her staff Clarissa to tell her what to do, she bawls like the little girl she is as she clings to Huey as everything comes crashing down on her. Thankfully, she recovers, but the Smug Super she was back then is gone.
  • Resident Evil 6: Carla Radames was turned into a clone of Ada Wong by Derek C. Simmons. She was firmly convinced that she was the real deal, and when she learned the truth she decided to take her revenge on Simmons as well as prove herself superior to the real Ada.


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