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Deconstructed Character Archetype / Video Games

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  • Under Night In-Birth:
    • Hilda is the deconstruction of the Femme Fatale. Everyone doesn't deny that she has a lot of sex appeal and every word she speaks sounds like an orgasm. However, she's too dumb to use her sexiness to her advantage and she's also Ax-Crazy and quite the bitch, so no one would want to do anything for her. The only one she manages to seduce is Hyde Kido, which isn't much of an accomplishment.
    • Nanase deconstructs the violent Tsundere girls who quickly jump to conclusions that have overrun anime and games for years. Having been rescued from a Void by Hyde, Nanase developed a huge crush on him, but responded to that by chasing him across the city claiming he had done something perverted to her because she thought In-Birth powers were transmitted through sex. Instead of being endearing or having heartwarming moments with her dere side, she only causes trouble for Hyde by making his female friends believe he actually did molest her, and when the misunderstanding is cleared up, it's clear they have little patience left for her. It's still Played for Laughs, but her multitude of negative traits land her solidly in Joke Character territory.
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    • Phonon, or rather Yoshiko, deconstructs the cute young Chuunibyou girl character. Unlike typical examples of this, where the girl is kind and harmless but sometimes needs to be pulled back to reality, Phonon's delusions are strong enough to make her a physically violent Jerkass who is so into her made up identity and worried about being seen as normal that she went into the Hollow Night specifically to gain superpowers and make herself look cooler. Everyone else sees her as a moody teenager who thinks she's smarter than she actually is, and some are worried that she'll become the next Hilda.
  • God of War: Kratos is a deconstruction of the classical Greek hero and Spartan archetypes: a person who is defined by using his physical strength to do whatever he wants, seeks revenge for any affront, has a "Might Makes Right" morality and has divine parentage is less likely to be a paragon and more likely to be a violent psychopath hellbent on killing his enemies - at the expense of the whole universe. Of course, this also ignores another key archetype of the classic Greek hero and Spartan: to never commit hubris and think yourself above the gods, or face divine punishment. Kratos shows what happens when they don't care and manage to get past that: killing all the gods and destroying the universe.
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  • Tales of Zestiria: Alisha is a deconstruction of the Politically Active Princess. She actively tries her hardest to help her country, but because all the power seems to lie in the hands of Bartlow and his cohorts she's largely ineffective. However, it's not until later that you find out that the reason why she's ineffective is because Alisha valued being a knight over her duties as a princess and as a direct result of that, she actively neglected her own position as princess in order to live out the stories of knights and heroes that she loved. During the confrontation with Maltran, she reveals that she deliberately raised Alisha that way to make it easy to manipulate her before forcing Alisha to kill her, all while telling her This Is Reality; this forcefully shatters Alisha's idolization of knighthood and makes her set aside her knighthood and her belief in honor and chivalry to focus on being as the Princess of Hyland. It is only by doing this that she becomes effective politically.
  • Metal Gear:
    • The series as a whole deconstructs the most basic Archetype in Hollywood: the badass Action Hero who blows bad guys to hell and gets the girl. Rather than being a hardcore larger than life hero, Solid Snake ends up becoming a traumatized mess of a man in response to the hell he's put through throughout his adventures. And, while several women do show some interest in him, the closest he comes to being in any sort of long-term relationship is with Otacon.
    • Big Boss, who Solid Snake is a clone of, takes the deconstruction even further. While we initially meet Snake as a seasoned soldier, Big Boss's first mission turns him from being a Wide-Eyed Idealist with Patriotic Fervor into a Shell-Shocked Veteran who felt that he became an Unwitting Pawn to the government when the mission's true nature was revealed to him - a petty political affair carried out to kill an innocent soldier (who served as his mentor) and ensure that the United States made off with a fortune. As such, he left the United States to start his own private military company that became involved with increasingly morally-questionable operations, which eventually led to him being branded as a terrorist in spite of the fact that his actions successfully prevented nuclear war. After his base of operations was destroyed for the first time, he became a shell of a man that decided to embrace his role as a war criminal as long as it meant he could create a Heaven for soldiers like himself - which, of course, would come at the cost of making the rest of the world a living Hell for everyone else. Interestingly enough, this would retroactively make Solid Snake a Reconstruction of this archetype: while he's still an emotional wreck, he serves as a Knight In Sour Armor that still chooses to fight with the government because he believes that it's the right thing to do, even if Being Good Sucks, instead of pursuing his own selfish and ultimately self-destructive goals like Big Boss.
    • The Boss from Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater deconstructs the Hero Antagonist and the Fake Defector, in the most heartbreaking way possible. It all turns out at the end of the game that The Boss was a double agent sent by the US Government to infiltrate Volgin's unit and acquire The Philosopher's Legacy; when this plan went sour after Volgin used a nuclear weapon on Russian soil, to prove its innocence and avert World War III, the US Government had to declare The Boss a rogue agent and pin the nuclear attack on her, and she knowingly goes along with this plan because it's for the good of her country. In the end she dies by the hand of her student, going down in history as a traitor and a war criminal on both sides of the Cold War, and worst of all the sheer callousness of how she was used and discarded is what causes Big Boss to become disillusioned by governments and gradually become the Big Bad of the series.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Cecil in Final Fantasy IV is a deconstruction of the hero of 80s JRPGs like Dragon Quest, who would go out, steal things from distant kingdoms and kill dragons because a king asked him to. Cecil starts the game miserable about his chosen career path but unable to bring himself to quit; later, the Mist Dragon he is sent to slay turns out to be connected to the life force of a young mother who dies as a result, leaving her daughter an orphan. He eventually decides to quit his job, and most of the game is his attempts to undo as much as he can of his damage.
    • Cloud in Final Fantasy VII is:
      • A riff off the classic RPG image of the young man with the sword who heads out from the city to save the world by killing the bad guy. In his case, his reason for wanting to travel the world is a weird compulsion, spurred on by hallucinations, that is eventually revealed as being a form of mind control. Like Final Fantasy characters before him, Terra and Kain, he's able to be mind-controlled due to something in his blood, but his mental breakdown is more realistic in comparison, leaving him in a wheelchair and dribbling.
      • A riff off the stoic, experienced badass Mercenary '90s Anti-Hero who acts like a Jerkass because he's so deep. Cloud is ridiculously strong, charismatic and good-looking, a veteran who's been through unspeakable horrors that give him mental problems, and performs stylish feats of badassery like riding around on motorbikes and doing unnecessary backflips to get off things. But his continual insistence that he doesn't care about anything but the job, while striking poses and flipping his hair, only fools a couple of characters. Mostly, it's seen by the other characters as strange, annoying behaviour, and he's constantly put in ridiculous situations that reveal it as the adolescent posturing that it is. (The game was made during the mid-90s, at a time when it was fashionable for real-world twenty-somethings to act disaffected.) When Cloud becomes a bodyguard to Aeris and starts obsessing about saving her, it's obvious Aeris doesn't need his protection, and she's only going with it because she's attracted to Cloud and it gives her the excuse to follow him around and flirt with him. Eventually, Cloud's attempts to ignore his mental problems while denying his true self causes him to have a mental breakdown, and it's revealed that the whole personality is based on self-delusion. Once Cloud becomes comfortable with the fact that he doesn't have to be a cocky action hero and allows his real personality out, he turns out to be pretty dorky but likeable.
    • Final Fantasy VIII deconstructs the Kid Hero by overt comparison to Child Soldiers. Your party of heroic 16 and 17 year-olds is just as mentally damaged and scarred as child soldiers tend to be in real life, not helped by using Phlebotinum which erases their memories, thus taking time to deconstruct the Amnesiac Hero as well.
    • Lightning of the Final Fantasy XIII games deconstructs the "strong female character" trope. When her and Serah's parents died, she tried to make herself "strong" so that she could care for herself and her sister, creating her "Lightning" persona by shedding the parts of herself she viewed as "weak". This ends up alienating Serah from her, causing strife between her and the other party members, and influences Hope to fester his desire for revenge against Snow. She realizes along the way how her "tough" persona has only caused her problems. After Serah dies in Final Fantasy XIII-2, Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII sees her as once again distant and cold, not due to Bhunivelze's influence but her own desire to seal away her "weaknesses", which also causes the creation of Lumina. She defrosts over the course of the game, and ultimately is saved from her intended Heroic Sacrifice by simply calling for help.
  • In Persona 3:
    • Yukari deconstructs the Tsundere archetype. Rather than the "bitchy harpy" the trope's reputation and her detractors would have you believe she is, Yukari is fairly reasonable and kind when her trust issues and pride are not in the way. Said trust issues come from her deceased father being blamed for an explosion that she knows Mitsuru's family was responsible for, and her mother neglecting her to find shallow comfort in other men. Her pride is the direct result of having to be independent since childhood, so she hates accepting help from others, and is conscious of that particular shortcoming. Even her Mood-Swinger habits are a byproduct of this, as Yukari is known to lash out at the nearest person when upset or agitated, especially when she had to accept help from them, then regret it immediately and apologize. As a final note, Yukari's parental issues caused her to believe that Love Hurts, which is why she alternates between enjoying her time spent with the male protagonist when she's in a good mood and being terrified of him reciprocating her feelings when she's in a bad one.
    • Junpei deconstructs Heroic Wannabe. Having grown up being told he's worthless by his alcoholic father, Junpei is overjoyed when he gets his Persona, seeing it as his chance to prove he's worth something... only to remain a Butt-Monkey and get upset when the protagonist outdoes him without even trying, even more painful with the female protagonist since they're best friends. Junpei ends up making some boneheaded desicions from this, such as telling a girl that he's the leader of S.E.E.S., and gets kidnapped when that girl turns out to be one of their enemies, even if it does benefit him in the long run.
    • Akihiko deconstructs Blood Knight. His entire reason for fighting is to protect his loved ones, but the problem is that it also distracts him from his emotional problems. Since he enjoys fighting so much, he's let his will to fight take over his life. Shinjiro, Mitsuru, and the female protagonist all take issue with this sort of self-destructive behavior, and agree that he's running away from his problems instead of solving them.
    • Mitsuru deconstructs Lonely Rich Kid. Being the heiress of a Fiction 500 megacorp, Mitsuru has a hard time connecting to her teammates and has a habit of treating them like subordinates and coworkers. Though she tries to make a show of being professional and in control, it falls apart when it turns out she has no idea how to socialize or even function in a middle-class way, alienating the other members of S.E.E.S. when her comments become too insensitive. On some level, she believes that being hands-off with them is for the best, hides information from them out of guilt and pride, and makes no attempt to reach out to them for most of the game.
    • Ken deconstructs Adults Are Useless. They're not, but Ken had no way of knowing that when his mother's death at the hands of a rogue Persona user was written off as an accident, and the police officers laughed him off when he tried to explain what he saw. Ken became hellbent on revenge, deciding to take matters into his own hands and kill said Persona user Shinjiro himself.
  • Persona 4:
    • Yosuke Hanamura deconstructs Stepford Smiler and/or Sad Clown. He makes jokes and humor to cope with the fact that he moved to a town against his will and not wholly liked (due to his dad being the manager of the Walmart expy, hence why they moved). His Shadow accuses him of going on the whole journey because he's bored and looking for something interesting to do, while wanting to be a big hero. Furthermore, he also ends up gaining resentment toward his own best friend, the P4 protagonist (though unlike Junpei, it does not hamper him and the two slug it out to help.)
    • Chie Satonaka deconstructs Tomboy, as it's made clear from encountering her Shadow that she is quite uncomfortable with people seeing her as unfeminine. This leads to resentment of her best friend, Yukiko while her Shadow points out that she enjoys Yukiko being dependent on her. She also mildly deconstructs Big Eater, as she mentions that her ravenous appetite is one of the things she finds unfeminine about herself and is thusly ashamed of.
    • Yukiko Amagi deconstructs Yamato Nadeshiko, as it's noted she feels powerless and weak, and believes she has no choice but to inherit her family's inn (neither of which is actually the case, as she learns in her Social Link).
    • Rise Kujikawa deconstructs Idol Singer and Kawaiiko, having originally gone into the music business because of a love of singing and a desire to make friends, only to grow fearful of the idea that people only see her for her idol persona.
    • Kanji Tatsumi deconstructs Real Men Wear Pink and Bruiser with a Soft Center. As a child, Kanji was ostracized for his sewing hobby, love of cute things and Ambiguously Gay nature and had very few friends. This led to him adotping a "tough guy" persona and getting into many fights to come off as more "manly", in an attempt to both be accepted and appease his late father... which only further isolated him as now everyone in school was terrified of him. He also developed major sexuality issues, with his Shadow (representing his innermost insecurities and repressed thoughts) manifesting as an over-the-top Camp Gay. In the end, Kanji undergoes Character Development and realises that being a "real man" doesn't mean being strong, it means accepting himself for who he is, but it certainly doesn't come easily.
    • Naoto Shirogane deconstructs Kid Detective. While she herself is brilliant, none of the police take her seriously due to her age, and she turns out to have major issues over this. Her Shadow taunts her over how mature she tries to act to get past the "young detective" bit - it's worth noting that her Shadow flip-flops between overly mature dialogue and crying like a baby. She eventually has to accept that she's not an adult yet and shouldn't try to grow up too fast. However, this is also combined with her dealing her femininity since it's implied that she has issues over not being taken seriously due to being a girl (hence why her Shadow taunts her over becoming a "big strong man" from Naoto's dectective fiction).
    • Mitsuo Kubo deconstructs Attention Whore. He is so desperate for attention and for people to notice him that he initially tries to take credit for the first two murders. This eventually causes Mitsuo to commit an actual murder in the end. It's telling that his Shadow takes the form of a baby, literally crying for attention.
    • Ms Kashiwagi, the Investigation Team's second homeroom teacher, deconstructs Sensei-chan. Nobody finds her immaturity or behavior endearing and she comes across as little more than a pathetic Attention Whore.
  • In Persona 5:
    • The traitor (Goro Akechi) deconstructs Bastard Bastard, as the ostracization and abuse he suffered as an illegitimate child (due to Japanese culture) is precisely why he's such a bastard.
    • Morgana deconstructs Token Non-Human as he strongly believes he Was Once a Man and becomes very touchy when people call him a cat. However when evidence starts appearing that he was never human, it leads to more denial and him questioning whether he belongs with his human friends, to the point where Morgana temporarily leaves the Phantom Thieves over an argument with Ryuji.
    • Yusuke is a Starving Artist because his adopted father/mentor Madarame steals all the credit and profit for Yusuke's artwork, leaving Yusuke literally starving and overworked. On top of it, Yusuke becomes overly focused with creating art for the sake of art. Part of his Confidant is him getting over the idea that making artwork to earn money doesn't make him less of an artist or a bad person.
    • Makoto's position as the Student Council President only makes her a glorified gopher for the Principal with no power to actually do something. Majority of the student mass sees her as an Academic Alpha Bitch who helps cover up the abuses by the school's staff (neither which is true of Makoto). This combined with her strained relationship with her sister leads her to desperation to try and be useful.
    • Haru is the Ojou but her rich lifestyle is merely a Gilded Cage where her father dictates her entire life, including an Arranged Marriage to an abusive man. She finds it hard to trust people as she isn't sure who likes her for who she is or for her money. Once her father dies, she is suddenly saddled with all the pressures of running a company which she had no preparation for, while dealing with grieving with her father's death.
    • Akechi deconstructs Great Detective. All his fame and fangirls are superficial and he is just as lonely and friendless as he was when he was growing up, except now people expect great things from him. He privately reveals to the Thieves that he isn't even passionate about the job; he continues to do it because he wants some catharsis from punishing criminals.
    • Ann is ethnically Japanese but has blue eyes, blonde hair and "white" facial features from her American grandparent. She is subjected to Slut-Shaming and nasty rumors about her and earns her unwanted attention from people like Kamoshida who attempts to use her best friend's starting position on the volleyball team as a means to get Ann to sleep with him.
    • Futaba is a Hikikomori due to trauma of seeing her mother being killed. She is aware how unhealthy her lifestyle is but is too afraid and suicidal to leave the house. Her foster father whom she adores is in danger of losing custody of her due to her unhealthy lifestyle.
    • Ryuji resembles your typical Japanese Delinquents but because everyone treats him like one, Ryuji decided to style himself like one. He is genuinely a Nice Guy and is an overwhelmingly forgiving and understanding person but was saddled with a bad reputation after Kamoshida ruined his life and caused Ryuji to snap and punch Kamoshida.
  • Dutch from Red Dead Redemption and its Prequel Red Dead Redemption II is a deconstruction of the Just Like Robin Hood character archetype. Whether or not he was Evil All Along is left open to interpretation, his gang in its early days only robbed from the rich. However by the events of II, he’s so obsessed with playing the hero that he’s got delusions of grandeur and makes terrible decisions, leading to the destruction of the gang and even more disastrous results. Turns out he just can’t stop being a criminal, no matter how noble he thinks he intentions are. He gets damn near every member of the gang killed for it (every active member at the beginning of II is dead by the end of I and they lost two right before II), including himself.
    • For RDR2 we have Sadie Adler, who becomes one of the typical Action Girl. Her violent nature is a consequence of some serious emotional trauma (it's heavily implied that the O'Driscolls raped her after killing her husband), with the terminally-ill Arthur Morgan outright stating that he and Sadie are "more ghosts than people." It eventually reaches the point that she tells John in the epilogue that she seeks out dangerous situations because she wants to die. She gets a bit better by the final mission and end credits, where she decides to leave for South America and find some measure of peace.
      • Arthur Morgan of the typical Villain Protagonist character. Sure, he may not have had a choice in the beginning, but his acceptance of being the "bad guy" leaves him feeling pretty shitty about himself. Reading his journals reveals that he is also under a lot of stress and that he feels that he can't help prevent everything from spiraling out of control. After he finds out he's dying, then he's wracked with guilt; desperate to make what amends he can, having realized that all he's done has not been worth it. The final nail in the coffin is if the player chooses to help John and has good karma, his last words will be "I tried. In the end... I did."
  • The Deconstructor Fleet that is Spec Ops: The Line does this over and over.
    • Big Bad: Colonel John Konrad took over the city of Dubai after it was ravaged by sandstorms, instituting a harsh military government and committing many atrocities to maintain order. However, Konrad is actually a Posthumous Character as he was Driven to Suicide over the immense guilt he felt from committing said atrocities, and Captain Walker has been imagining that Konrad is behind all of the city's woes even though Walker himself is actually the one destroying Dubai. Walker needed the idea of a Big Bad to justify his actions, even if said Big Bad was a complete farce.
    • Destructive Savior: Driven by his need to save the survivors of Dubai, Walker battles the Damned 33rd whenever he can without a thought to the long-term consequences. He eventually ends up destroying the radio tower, a good part of the city of Dubai, and all of the reserves of water, thus leaving him unable to save anyone.
    • Determinator: Captain Walker is initially part of a small recon team sent to investigate what happened in Dubai, find survivors, and then pull back to contact his superiors, but once he sees the madness that has engulfed the ruined city, he becomes set on getting involved and putting things right. Yet Walker never actually makes anything better - quite the opposite, in fact - and each new Tragic Mistake he makes only hardens his resolve to finish this self-imposed mission and justify what he was "forced" to do to complete it. By the end of the game he's crossed the Moral Event Horizon and doomed everyone in Dubai to a slow, horrible death, all because Walker couldn't turn back from what he decided he had to do.
    • Freudian Trio: Adams and Lugo actually trade the positions of id and superego over the course of the game; Adams is serious and stern but wants to save the refugees of Dubai, and Lugo is cheerful and joking but puts the mission above all else. As a result, they frequently disagree and butt heads. Walker is supposed to be the ego, one who resolves their differences and balances their viewpoints out, and thus they follow him no matter how bad things get. His lost cause leads them both to their doom.
    • Giant Mook: The Heavy Troopers are all over seven feet tall, carry light machine guns, and are ludicrously durable. However, their large sizes and imposing weapons make them easy targets for the player, and they are frequently forced to call for cover fire.
    • Hero Antagonist: The ultimate goal of the Damned 33rd is to maintain order in Dubai and protect the refugees, but Walker refuses to accept their better qualities and instead focuses on the atrocities they were driven to commit so he can continue to see them as the "antagonist."
    • Heroic Wannabe: Walker wants to be a hero and help Dubai above all else, so he defies his orders to leave the city and continues fighting the 33rd. His constant failure to do good in the hellhole that is Dubai just fuels his Determinator tendencies to the detriment of everyone else.
    • Jerkass: Radioman constantly taunts the Delta Squad over the airwaves and grates on their nerves with his obnoxious jokes. By the time he makes fun of the victims of the white phosphorous accident, Lugo declares that he will kill him and makes good on that promise.
    • The Leader: Walker has tight control over his Delta comrades and maintains their trust throughout the course of the story. If they had questioned his logic at any point or relieved him of duty when they had the chance, they might have survived the events of the game and Dubai might've been saved.
    • Token Good Teammate: Lugo is perhaps the most consistently moral member of the Delta Squad, shown best when he tries to stop Walker and Adams from using white phosphorous on a group o the 33rd. Even so, he is only one man and his comrades overrule him. As a result, forty-seven innocent refugees are needlessly killed.
    • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Walker is consistently motivated by his desire to be a hero and help Dubai, but his increasingly destructive actions negate any opportunity to save the refugees, and his intentions prevent him from acknowledging what he's done and leaving Dubai.
  • Grand Theft Auto V deconstructs the mindset of GTA characters with its three protagonists.
    • Franklin represents a new GTA protagonist, one who is trying to improve his lot in life. In Franklin's case, he works to achieve this by leaving behind the gang-banger culture he grew up in and rolling with professional criminals, first a morally bankrupt used car dealer, and then the bank robber Michael who earns him far bigger scores than he used to.
    • Michael represents the GTA protagonist who "won". He has it made and can comfortably retire, but has found life after crime to be boring and wants desperately to get back in "the game".
    • Trevor is representative of the GTA protagonist who eschews story missions in favor of doing whatever he likes: Video Game Cruelty Potential incarnate. At the same time, though, he never really accomplishes anything: his best-laid plans fail spectacularly, and the only real successes he sees are when he teams up with Michael and Franklin. Personality-wise, he's also an utterly repulsive human being, living in a dirty trailer in the desert and destroying the lives of everybody around him with his antisocial behavior.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Kid Hero is deconstructed through Zelda and Link in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. While Zelda was clever and knowledgeable, her plan to protect Hyrule unintentionally ended up helping the villain because she didn't know as much as she thought she did. While the nine year old Link managed an impressive kill count, Ganondorf painfully establishes that Link is still not strong enough in a Final Boss Preview. The kids thought they could be heroes and save the day (perfectly understandable kid behavior) but they did not have the maturity or understanding to be heroes yet and the consequences were severe. Zelda acknowledges this after the time skip and it is perhaps why the Master Sword waited for Link to grow up first before letting him wield it.
    • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker deconstructed The Chosen One in the backstory. Hyrule was inspired by the legend of the Hero of Time and relied heavily on a hero to spontaneously appear in their time of need to save them. But when Ganon returned without a Link to oppose him, the people of Hyrule are unable to defend themselves and the gods flooded the land to stop Ganon from taking over. The Link in this story has no connection or relation to the older heroes and must earn his status as a hero through his own initiative.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild also takes apart The Chosen One and the struggles one would have to face to live up to the expectations. Both Zelda and Link face immense pressures from family and civilians to protect the kingdom from destruction due to a prophecy, dedicating their entire lives to this single cause and when they failed and Hyrule is in ruins, they suffered resentment from some of the surviving races even a hundred years later.
      • Link felt it was necessary to hide all emotion, and constantly maintained a cold and stoic front, to cope with the huge amount of responsibility he were given and keep from cracking under the pressure. He even refused to speak too much, out of fear of saying anything unbecoming of the Chosen One. All of which made him feel very alone.
      • Zelda was severely admonished by her family for her inability to summon her divine power to seal Ganon without any guidance from anyone to learn how to do so, leading to frustration, self-loathing and self-doubt. Her family dismissed any interest in other activities, and fractured the relationship between them. When Calamity Ganon returned and Zelda was unable to use her powers, her father and the other Champions were killed and the entire kingdom was destroyed, she blamed herself for failure despite doing everything she could.
  • Pokémon Sun and Moon
    • The villains, Team Skull, deconstruct Kid Hero. They are made up of teenagers who have failed the Island Challenge. This gives them severe self-esteem issues and means many of them have become homeless because they are ashamed to return home; they are forced to turn to crime precisely because they can not return to society.
    • Lusamine deconstructs a typical Pokémon protagonist. She wants to acquire all Pokémon, much like how the protagonist may capture all Pokémon for the Pokedex. When a new, unidentified Pokémon appears, she becomes obsessed with having it. When the heroes call her cruel for treating her Pokémon like exhibits or trophies after seeing her collection of cryogenically frozen Pokémon, she counters that the heroes have likely caught a bunch of Pokémon solely for the sake of having them and have ignored said Pokémon since.
      • In perhaps a grand moment of Irony, the game also introduces a feature allowing your PC Pokemon to partake in fun activities like harvest berries, train, relax, mine and so on, allowing you to subvert what Lusamine does. The guy who runs it, Mohn, is a little eccentric, but loves Pokemon. He's Lusamine's husband and Lillie and Gladion's father who ended up being sucked into a portal before arriving in Poke Pelago and losing his memories. His disappearance was what led to Lusamine's Start of Darkness in the first place.
  • In Detective Pikachu, the titular Pikachu is a deconstruction of how Pikachu are portrayed, being cynical and sarcastic rather than cheerful and playful, due to being frustrated over nobody but The Hero being able to understand his Pokémon Speak.
  • As for being a game about deconstructing Dungeon Crawler tropes, Darkest Dungeon gives a few examples when certain classes go through the Despair Event Horizon:
    • The Hellion begins to showcase what happens when The Berserker cracks; she either goes from being a Blood Knight to Ax-Crazy and begins downright scaring her companions with her brutality instead of supporting them, shows that behind all her bravado that she is as scared witless as the rest, or she uses her blood lust toward Self-Harm tendencies and actively challenges her opponents to try and hurt her, putting herself at great risk while doing so.
    • The Jester becomes one for the Plucky Comic Relief, as he is the class that normally gives stress heals with song and jokes. If he undergoes afflictions like Abusive or Hopeless, he starts using his jokes to spite the rest of the group, or straight up stops trying to be funny and ask them if they really thought that the mission was going to go well. Otherwise, his jokes simply become too dark and he begins to worsen the situation instead of lighting it up. Naturally, this starts to cause stress as opposed to healing it.
  • Sonic Lost World deconstructs Sonic's Leeroy Jenkins tendencies and 1-Dimensional Thinking. As if to parallel his bullet like speed, Sonic kind of has a one-track, arrogant mind, and when he sets his mind on a goal, he will not rest until it is carried out, and this can make him do some very impulsive, foolhardy stuff. Lost World shows just how this type of mindset can backfire. Sonic impulsively kicks away Eggman's Cacophonic Conch, and allows the Deadly Six to rebel against Eggman. They use Eggman's Extractor machine to drain the world of its energy, and nearly kill Amy and Knuckles. It happens again later in the game where Sonic's recklessness causes Tails to be captured and nearly turned into a robot.
  • Halo:
    • The Elites and Brutes are Proud Warrior Races who delighted in the glory of battle and war. But after the end of the Human-Covenant war and the Covenant had fallen, the two alien races found themselves struggling to adjust with the removal of their religion, culture, politics and military. Without the Prophets to give them answers, many Elites don't know what to do now that everything they used to fight for was proven a lie. The Elite society struggles to self-govern and have a self-sufficient military while trying to deal with a civil war with a faction that wants to re-establish the Covenant. The Brutes are having a harder time than the Elites, more prone to fighting among themselves than with their enemy, the Elites.
    • The series also shows the lengths needed to gain a Super Soldier, such as the Master Chief. Six year old children were kidnapped from their families, put through a Training from Hell before they were fourteen and then subjected to experiments and augmentations that killed and crippled a good portion of them. Master Chief is one of the few SPARTAN-II to survive after a decades-long war against the Convenant, as the Spartans were humanity's best hope at preventing their extinction. But as a result, Master Chief's humanity is sacrificed as he is arguably more robot and machine than human, having muted emotions and inability to interact with regular people. One of Halsey's interrogators even goes as far as to say that Master Chief's success was due to the fact he is a broken shell of a human being.
  • The entire Life Is Strange saga is a deconstruction of the rebellious teenage daughter. Chloe is a by the number rebellious teenager: Reckless behavior? Check. Hard to get along with? Check. Listens to antisocial music and dresses the part to match? Check. Disrespectful to her mother? Check. And even though she is given a tragic backstory of losing her father in a car accident, and having to face the reality of her mother moving on with another man, it doesn't change the fact that Chloe's own choices and behavior is responsible for her constantly getting in trouble, which are often life threatening, and results in her possibly dying, if Max choose to let life take its natural course and not interfere at the risk of destroying all of Arcadia Bay. The Prequel Life Is Strange: Before the Storm give more examples of this, and also reveals that Rachel Amber was even more rebellious than Chloe, despite her popular good girl image at school. She wanted to leave Arcadia Bay and her parents behind because of her own issues with them, which are just as tragic but for different reasons. And her actions between the two games results in her getting kidnapped and tragically murdered at the hands of a serial killer, which becomes a major plot point in the original game.
  • In Mass Effect 3, Shepard is seen as the Hope Bringer for the rest of the universe as the person who could stop the Reapers. However you can see how the pressures of saving the galaxy and how all the races are depending on him/her are slowly breaking Shepard down who starts showing signs of worry, stress, fear, exhaustion and loneliness and wonders if he/she can actually pull it off. Shepard starts having recurring nightmares of being unable to save the little boy in the vent and other fallen friends and it's apparent how exhausted Shepard is and there is barely any fight left in him/her as the game progresses. It's arguable that Shepard has become a subtle Death Seeker as someone not actively looking for death but welcomes it as a relief.
  • Cassius Bright from The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky deconstructs One-Man Army, Memetic Badass and Retired Badass. Cassius almost single-handedly saved Liberl from Erebonia's invasion in the 100 Days War, and his achievements as a Bracer are so great he's treated like an in-universe God-Mode Sue. The main plot of the first Sky game hinges on one question: what happens when someone like that retires? In short, the game's antagonist is a former protege of Cassius who saw him as the one thing holding the country together. When he left the army, he felt Liberl was defenceless against foreign powers. So he became a Well-Intentioned Extremist, starting a coup d'etat and making deals with a shady secret society to obtain a piece of dangerous ancient technology. When Cassius returns, he literally beats it into his former student that, for all his achievements, he's just one man, and treating him like the one thing that held the army together is incredibly dangerous for the country's future. Cassius is forced out of retirement in order to clear up this mess.
  • Rean Schwarzer from The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel deconstructs a few archetypes:
    • He has a tendency to sacrifice himself for someone else's sake, even if it brings him a lot of harm. This is at first played for Fanservice when he gets a face full of boobs from Alisa after trying to save her from a Trap Door but this isn't explored till the second chapter where he jumps right in to take a hit for Jusis and Machias who were bickering while the monster isn't dead which results in harming his dominant sword hand. Jusis has to call him out on his Martyr Without a Cause tendencies.
    • Being The Chosen One to pilot a Super Robot sounds good and all but when the country that he's in forces him to fight against a country that he doesn't have any reason to fight against and yet still has to go to reduce the bloodshed from citizens and soldiers alike, this ends up making him a miserable man. As a bonus, he's also a national hero, giving him no escape from the responsibilities of being one. That's not even starting on some of his students who don't like him mainly because he participated in conquering their countries and homeland at the start of Cold Steel III.
    • His Superpowered Evil Side is a big deconstruction on how to master and control the powers especially when the source of those powers, his heart, doesn't even belong to him but from him but from his father who gave him his heart. And said father is also the Big Bad who can control him at will. Several times people have told him to master those powers except said people have no idea of what they're even talking about, making him lose his powers at the worst possible moments when it gets too powerful for him to control.
    • He's the first character onscreen to kill off one of the goddess Aidios' seven guardians who are guarding her treasures, the Sept-Terrion. This ends up being a bad idea because the guardian he killed is the only reason why the curse of Erebonia hasn't spread all over the Erebonian empire and beyond. And as a side bonus, he winds up with an amnesia by Cold Steel IV.
  • LISA deconstructs Damsel in Distress, Living Macguffin, Mysterious Waif, and Gender Rarity Value through Buddy. She is the last girl in the world, Brad finds her as a baby and raises her while having no idea who she is or where she came from, and she gets kidnapped by a gang led by a scary guy wearing a skull mask. Throughout the entire second game, she’s sought after by everyone, and even her own adoptive father Brad doesn’t respect her individuality- in fact, his obsessive desire to protect her, as with many waifs, drives her away when she sees all the horrible things he does in pursuit of her. The third game, which stars her, shows exactly what kind of mental effect might be inflicted on a girl who is treated as little more than a trophy or a plot device- she snaps and goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against the world, killing off every last human and leader she can find intending to conquer Olathe while fully embracing the twisted philosophy of her birth father Dr Yado, who set everything up. Ironically, Rando, the aeformentoned gang leader who was initially portrayed as the Big Bad is the only person who treated Buddy with love (possibly too much).
  • In Little Nightmares, despite their skittish behavior, the Nomes are the only friendly and docile creatures in the Maw and they try to make friends with other inhabitants. Unfortunately, residing in the Maw, they are often killed by the other inhabitants for being nice. In fact, they are not even safe from the protagonist Six who then eats a Nome after it offers the former some food.
  • Until Dawn:
    • Jessica acts like a Proud Beauty but reveals to Mike that she has a lot of self-esteem issues and insecurities over her looks. She plays up her confident sexpot act because it's what people expect of her.
    • Emily is an Alpha Bitch but similar to Jessica, it's implied she is actually very insecure and is afraid of failure and her self-centered and rude behaviour is a mask to hide it.
    • Hannah is a Hopeless Suitor towards Mike despite knowing he is already dating someone else and the few romance tests she took indicated that they were incompatible. She continues to openly pine for him. Her friends notice this and pull a prank on her because of it, leading to dire consequences for Hannah and everyone else.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • Sigurd of Chalphy, the protagonist of the first half of Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War deconstructs the typical Action Hero archetype of the series' Lords. He's the typical noble hero holding fast to his beliefs, but his optimism and noble nature become a double-edged sword in the grand scheme of things, as his Black and White Morality leads him to solve his problems by just defeating his enemies. This gives the corrupt Grannvale nobles the chance to take advantage of him to conquer the entire continent, and his trust in Arvis blinds him to the point he doesn't see the latter's betrayal coming until it's too late, ultimately paying the price with his life.
    • Garon in Fire Emblem Fates is everything that can go wrong with the Casanova Wannabe archetype. Like many Casanovas, he was a massive flirt with many women but could never let go of a woman he had relations with and quickly amassed a harem of concubines. These concubines eventually proceeded to kill each other and their children until only a few children remained. The whole situation left him very bitter and cruel.
    • Fire Emblem: Three Houses tears apart a lot of the series' recurring character archetypes.
      • Edelgard is an Action Hero lord in the vein of Hector, Ephraim, and Ike gone horribly wrong. Like many such lords in the past, she has no qualms about using military force to get her way. Unlike previous lords, she is actually willing to incite a war to achieve her aims, and her actions turn her into the unquestioned Big Bad of the Azure Moon route and a major antagonist on the Verdant Wind and Silver Snow routes. Byleth is the only thing preventing her from degenerating into a full-blown Tin Tyrant.
      • The Fire Emblem series tends to base the personalities of most of its lords off of the first lord in the series, Marth - kind, noble, and wise young royals who believe that War Is Hell and cling to optimism and The Power of Friendship in the face of hardship in order to get through with their morality and optimism relatively unshaken. In Three Houses, the closest of the three main characters to the Marth archetype is Dimitri Alexandre Blaiddyd, crown prince of the Holy Kingdom of Faerghus. During the first part of the story, Dimitri fits the Marth mold, being the most moralistic, noble, and chivalrous of the three main lords, while having a strong distaste for killing and war. However, unlike Marth and similar lords, the emotional and mental trauma he experiences before the story beginsnote  and during the story's events breaks him, turning him into a violent, self-isolating and cynical Knight In Sour Armor in the second part of the story who must be pulled out of his self-destructive behavior by his former teacher and friend, Byleth.
      • Sylvain is another deconstruction of Casanova Wannabe. While he acts like one, he only does so because he knows most girls are actually interested in his Crest rather than himself. This makes him bitter towards the girls he is wooing and he is unable to form proper romances with women because of this.
      • The Death Knight is an Ax-Crazy Blood Knight subordinate in the vein of Kempf, Valter, and Hans, except his psychotic actions are treated as a legitimate mental illness instead of a simple way to make him a Hate Sink. The Death Knight is Jeritza's psychotic split personality, born when his father Baron Bartels decided to marry his own stepdaughter Mercedes in order to breed more Crest-bearing children, causing him to snap and slaughter the entire noble house. Jeritza distances himself from others in order to keep them away from the Death Knight, and his happiest ending basically has him go into therapy for several years to help overcome his issues.
      • Once you learn Sothis' backstory, she is basically a divine dragon champion for humanity in the vein of Naga, Mila, and pre-degeneration Duma and Anankos gone horribly wrong. Like previous such characters, she is a powerful dragon who is worshiped by humanity and can empower humans with blood-bonding. However, Nemesis murdered her in order to take that kind of power for himself and his followers by force, and in the present Rhea deliberately cultivates her reputation as an omnipotent creator goddess to justify several actions that are morally dubious at best and flat-out tyrannical at worst.
  • Yakuza is in many ways a deconstruction of the romantic and idealized view of the Yakuza. Kiryu is a prime example of the romantic yakuza, a powerful and noble figure who protects the common people against brutal thugs and overbearing powers-that-be, and shows a lot of this attitude too. The games are mostly about what happens when this ideal runs headfirst into the realities of organized crime in the 21st century.
  • Bendy and the Ink Machine deconstructs The Wonka through Joey Drew. His insistence on using the titular device puts a strain on the animation department, who have to suffer through pipe bursts, loud noises and constant interruptions, as well as the finances (and may have possibly driven the company accountant Grant Cohen to insanity). This, combined with Joey's other issues and a simple decline in Bendy's popularity, ended up speeding up the downfall of the studio.
  • The Deponia series takes the behavioral traits of your average adventure game protagonist: rampant theft and regular screwing over of random people for their own benefit, and gives them to Nominal Hero Rufus, who's exactly the kind of selfish, unlikable sociopath you'd expect to have them.


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