Follow TV Tropes


The Ace / Video Games

Go To

  • Pierce in Battalion Wars 2. He even pulls off three Big Damn Heroes moments in a single mission—the last one, no less.
  • Bendy and the Ink Machine: Bertrum Piedmont's engineering feats in his amusement parks "stagger the imagination." His ego may also be as big as his parks.
  • Subverted by BlazBlue's Bang Shishigami — he's got the attitude of The Ace down pat, what with his over-the-top theatrics, constant attempts at taking the centre stage of every scene he's in, Cloudcuckoolander traits, leitmotif (he's also got a second one, complete with vocals by JAM Project, for his Super Mode), Hot-Blooded-ness and dedication towards being a true 'Hero of Justice'. He's also the resident Joke Character who, though not in any way lacking in competence, is still only a human in a cast consisting of Super Humans, various Monsters, Beastkins, Robot Girls, a Samurai Ghost Robot Time Traveler and people possessing Artifacts of Doom, making him horribly Wrong Genre Savvy and making everybody else treat him like a joke.
  • Advertisement:
  • Citan Uzuki from Xenogears. He is "officially" just a rather skilled doctor, but as Fei once states, "the doc knows a lot about a lot of things". Apart from his medical skills, he is also a genius mechanic and engineer, one of the greatest swordsmen in the world, a talented martial artist, usually the most intelligent person around, a keen psychologist, a highly skilled spy and double agent, an expert in Lost Technology (although some people are better than him at that), a good and responsible husband and father, and maybe the only person in the world who understands something of the game's metaplot (whose implications would scare the shit out of any normal person) without being at least several hundreds of years old. With all of that, he still manages to be a really kind, caring and accessible person who helps everyone and will usually always say and do the right thing. The only things he sucks at is cooking. (But his wife is amazing at it.)
  • Advertisement:
  • Drake Redcrest from Chibi-Robo!. Or at least he's a toy based on an ace from a show within the game.
  • Isaac Clarke of Dead Space. Extremely competent engineer, skilled pilot, occasional hacker, and seasoned Space Zombie Killer. Occasionally kills Eldritch Abominations with a Plasma Cutter.
  • Devil May Cry's flagship badass, Dante. Mostly in DMC3 and DMC4. In the first few minutes of DMC3, he takes scythe blades through the arm, leg and chest. He casually rips the blade from his chest without flinching, then proceeds to kick the crap out of a bunch of Mooks using only a bunch of billiard balls and a gun. While munching on pizza. Almost always has a one-liner ready for the situation at hand, while also succeeding in not being a heartless Sociopathic Hero too.
    • Though he is the villain, Vergil could be considered this way too. The Daniel Southworth-voiced, blue-clad, katana-wielding Aloof Evil Twin beats Dante at one point.
    • Both brothers can be cited as Broken Ace, due to having so much baggage, a lack of poor communication skills to anyone weaker than them, being complete blood knights looking for a quick fix in a fight, or just having no respect for each other as brothers that hate each other.
    • Dante is more of an Ace in DMC4. Every time he shows up he upstages Nero in some way and spends half the game killing the villains that Nero couldn't kill.
  • Advertisement:
  • Duke Nukem is the quintessential Ace, mixed with a bit of Jerkass for good measure. He publishes a book titled Why I'm So Great, collects his own memorabilia, and, while saving the world from aliens, is more concerned with the aliens stealing Earth's nubile women than Earth itself.
  • In most of the Fallout series, you can take the special trait "Mysterious Stranger," which lets the player be occasionally and spontaneously aided by a man in a coat and fedora, armed with a six-shooter, who shows up, shoots everyone who has any intent of hurting the player, and then leaves. It's rare that it happens, but his overwhelming badassery makes up for it. His unique magnum can kill just about anything that moves (or doesn't) in one hit, but he still likes to unload all six rounds into them.
  • In the Final Fantasy VII-verse:
    • Before his Start of Darkness, Sephiroth was known as the absolute best of the elite group SOLDIER and admired as a hero. He was actually so good that, according to Cloud, the stories people told about him were understating how strong he was — rather than the other way around as usual.
    • Zack Fair, especially in Crisis Core. He's everything Cloud wants to be — upbeat, popular with everyone, cheerful and fun-loving, Jumped at the Call and never came down, actually a member of SOLDIER, etc. He did nearly everything Cloud's famous for and did it first, up to and including riding on the top of trains, fighting rogue SOLDIERs and arguably did a better job of all of it. He's the first to meet Aerith by falling into her flower bed, as Cloud does years later. Almost everyone Zack encounters likes him, or at least they don't hate him even though he works for Shinra — this includes Cissnei, Tseng, Sephiroth, Yuffie, Tifa, etc. The only time Zack really fails at a critical moment is in trying to stop Sephiroth during the Nibelheim Incident — unfortunately, Zack's efforts are Doomed by Canon. Though he eventually loses to Sephiroth, Zack manages to put up a darn good fight. Zack is the sort of guy who's just Too Good for This Sinful Earth. His death is a Foregone Conclusion, but he naturally dies in an epically heroic way, still every inch a Hero and every ounce an Ace.
    • Even death doesn't stop Zack, because he appears to Cloud just as Sephiroth is charging for the kill and manages to give Cloud a time-stopped heroic pep talk from beyond the grave, inspiring Cloud to find the strength not only to fight on, but to win decisively in a single attack.
    • Zack's position as The Ace is lampshaded in episode 8 of Before Crisis, when Zack first shows up and works with the player character Turk. The title of that episode is "A Light That Penetrates Through the Darkness" or "A Light Even Darkness Can't Penetrate". Guess who they're referring to.
    • It even gets a bit meta; Zack is one of, if not THE most popular characters of the FFVII compilation. Possibly the entire franchise.
    • Though Crisis Core also shows that Zack had some serious issues due to all of the misery the game puts him through. To Cloud and others Zack was an awesome heroic figure — but Zack himself had Heroic Self-Deprecation in spades and died still wondering if he had managed to become a true hero.
    • Zack is also an Ace because despite not being a member of the Jenova project directly, he defeats Genesis and Angeal, the two members of Project G, while they're powered up into giant monsters by their genetic absorption abilities. And even Sephiroth, fully insane and with no regard for anyone's life, was unable to kill him the only time they fought head-to-head, though he did defeat Zack, and probably would have killed him had Cloud not run him through and thrown him into the reactor core. If there's any regular SOLDIER more powerful than Zack, we don't get to see them.
  • Tidus the "Blitz Ace" in Final Fantasy X. Yuna also fits this role quite well in Final Fantasy X-2 as well, as demonstrated through her Chronic Hero Syndrome. Tidus is only really The Ace in Blitzball; he's an Idiot Hero for a lot of the game.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • Deconstructed in Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones. Ephraim starts off so damn amazing. However, when he gets back to Renais, Seth tells him that the citizens are not cheering for his return. They're only happy because Orson's reign of terror is over. Ephraim takes this as the sign that his Leeroy Jenkins tendencies haven't been great for his people and begins to mature from then on. Additionally, his fame as The Ace is one of the biggest reasons why his friends Innes and Lyon, despite both being very talented in their own areas, display quite a bit of an inferiority complex and covert/not-so-covert envy. In the first case Ephraim only sees it as normal Friendly Rivalry, but Innes takes it more seriously to the point of telling Eirika that he'll only propose to her after defeating Ephraim; in the latter, it's massively Played for Drama since Ephraim adores Lyon and never sees him as inferior, so he's struck hard (read: he's driven to tears) when he learns about Lyon's psychological troubles and how a part of them can be linked to seeing himself as inferior to Ephraim.
    • Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn has a few of them. Ike qualifies in his Radiant Dawn incarnation (having already taken down one evil empire in Path of Radiance), the Black Knight is busy being the best general for both Daein and Begnion at the same time, and Bastian seems to be a man of many talents (including being perhaps the greatest politician in all of Tellius) and Shinon is not only the best archer in the game, but his epilogue explicitly states that he's just good at everything he tries out.
    • Despite their youth, Byleth of Fire Emblem: Three Houses is already an exceptionally skilled mercenary at the start of the game, quickly becomes one of the best teachers at the Officers Academy, and their choice of allegiance is the deciding factor in the post-Time Skip war.
  • F-Zero: Captain Falcon is considered one of the best pilots and bounty hunters in the entire universe.
  • Grand Theft Auto IV: In a franchise full of badasses, Niko Bellic may just stand head and shoulders above the rest. Either running or fighting, he is extremely strong, tough, fast and durable. It's not just how you play him, more than one NPC will remark on his One-Man Army abilities.
  • Like his mythological counterpart, Lancelot in Guenevere is presented as a seemingly perfect knight embodies the chivalric virtues to the public.
  • Inazuma Eleven : Gouenji, the ace striker from the main team, is aknowledged as this in-universe. In fact, most if not all soccer teams have at least one ace striker. Strikers are usually the best players and they tend to be the captains, but not always.
  • In the 8-bit game Infiltrator, the player character is Johnny "Jimbo-Baby" McGibbits: super-soldier, ace helicopter pilot, engineer, heart and neurosurgeon, karate expert, movie actor, rock star and devil-may-care all-round nice guy.
  • League of Legends: Jayce, the Defender of Tomorrow, is an extremely good-looking, highly intelligent Badass Normal who fights crime with his lightning-based cannon-hammer hybrid. He's one of his hometown Piltover's most brilliant Hextech inventors, while at the same time being extremely popular with the city-state's general populace, who look up to and respect him as an Ideal Hero in his endeavors of enforcing justice in Piltover. On the other hand, he's also exceedingly full of himself and highly arrogant about his talents, to the point that he's disliked by most of his colleagues because of it.
  • Every person (post-Tia) who joins your party in Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals/Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals gets hyped up in the town that you meet them in. Selan and Dekar are the most prominent examples in both games.
  • Prince Peasley in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga. Whenever he smiles, the entire screen flashes white. Luigi swoons over him.
  • Commander Shepard from Mass Effect is a clear example. S/he is regularly stated to be the most skilled fighter in the galaxy and his/her leadership and charisma become practically legendary in 2 and 3. And that's not even getting into his/her nearly flawless success rate. Over the trilogy, not counting the Collectors' ambush on the first Normandy, Shepard is only shown to lose once, on Thessia. A defeat that sends him/her into a brief Heroic BSoD before s/he quickly bounces back to deliver a devastating strike on Cerberus, the ones who caused the defeat in the first place.
    • Miranda Lawson is a noteworthy example, what with being genetically engineered to the summit of human perfection. She doesn't seem to have a problem with mentioning it from time to time. It's also Deconstructed through conversations. She suffers from an inferiority complex caused by having all her physical and intellectual abilities hand-tailored from birth, which causes her to feel that she can't take credit for any of her accomplishments on her own merit. Even more so, because she can't help but compare herself to the aforementioned Commander Shepard, who she sees as having accomplished everything s/he's done without being genetically engineered.
    • Joker is also a clear Ace, being the "best... helmsman in the Alliance Fleet", top of his flight class, commendation after commendation, all in spite of a crippling disease. He even claimed to have been better than the instructors by the end of flight school.
    • It's harder to notice with Garrus Vakarian since he tends to be overshadowed by Shepard, but he is one of the most skilled soldiers in the turian army, let alone party members. He's an outstanding sniper, highly capable engineer, great investigator, natural leader and excellent strategist. In the first game, it's revealed that he was a Spectre candidate at one time, before his father stepped in, though he tends to downplay this by pointing out that turian Spectre candidates are a dime-a-dozen. However, by the third game, he's mostly stepped out of Shepard's shadow and been promoted to having his own squad to counter the Reapers, and is implied to be one of the highest ranking officials in the turian military.
  • The CEO protagonist of Max Gentlemen Sexy Business! is simply great at everything they do. The most prominent is obviously being a businessperson, but they are also a highly skilled fighter, an incredibly well-traveled adventurer, and an effortless charmer, among many other areas of expertise. The start of the game is them returning from a particularly exciting vacation, and numerous date events with the love interests reference hordes of other nigh-superhuman achievements in the past.
  • Zero to X in the Mega Man X series.
  • The Boss from Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, who not only managed to fight in World War II while pregnant and give birth on the battlefield, she gave herself a Caesarean section! She's the fictional Mother of American Special Forces, is respected by everyone (even Volgin, who towers over her is intimidated by her), and the reason behind all of the events of the Metal Gear saga.
    • Snake from the same series is superficially The Ace, a legendary One-Man Army who's saved the world on multiple occasions and capable of wooing any woman (or man) he encounters, but the player, those close to him and Snake himself know that the truth is far less flattering. (It turns out that much of Naked Snake/Big Boss' accomplishments are fabrications created by Zero, while Solid Snake is an imperfect — and rapidly aging — clone of Big Boss. He may have saved the world, but it's revealed that in doing so, he's been an unwitting part of a not-so-Ancient Conspiracy's feud with Big Boss, then Revolver Ocelot.)
    • Grey Fox. "Fighting was the only thing... the only thing I was good at...". He was considered a hero and The Ace even after his defeat in Metal Gear 2.
  • Marco from Metal Slug.
  • Aki in Namco High is running perfect marks in every subject at once (and she's taking all the subjects) and is president of every club and star player of every sports team. The only thing she isn't good at is having more than four seconds a day of personal time. Also, she's a superhero.
  • Dan Murray of The Next Big Thing is a sports writer of no little renown, and good friends with most of the important Hollywood types. Everyone loves him so much that he can belittle, insult, and demean them until he's blue in the face and they'll just laugh and say, "What a guy!"
  • Lucien Moreau from the Nexus Clash Laurentia arc was a larger-than-life globetrotting adventurer who effortlessly succeeded at everything he put his mind to and was remarkably rich, charismatic, well-traveled and famous from a remarkably young age. Unfortunately, he got the notion that his four children would automatically be just as successful by virtue of being his and would be certain to carry on his legacy just as well as him. To say that this didn't work well for any of them would be an understatement. This didn't keep him from becoming Shrouded in Myth and being remembered as the father of his country.
  • Tom Goodman from No One Lives Forever. Subverted because he's already dead, and the one you meet is an impostor.
  • Oxenfree implies Michael was one. Possible dialogue reveals that he was very popular in school and actually got some cops to buy him beer. He was also the valedictorian for his high school graduation.
    • It gets Deconstructed when Michael admits he feels burdened by everyone's high expectations.
  • Joe Chin from Parappa The Rapper. In the cutscene from the first level he defeats two bullies just by boasting about his accomplishments to them.
  • The protagonist of Radiant Historia is this; he was able to learn an invisibility spell after seeing an enemy use it once. From the perspective of the non-time travelers, its even more ridiculous. "We need a one-of-a-kind magic item protected by the most powerful army in the world!" "Oh, I have that right here in my pocket." He had to jump between two different timelines a few dozen times to get it, but they don't see that.
  • Deconstructed in the Hentai game Season of the Sakura; protagonist Shuji Yamagami is instantly good at any sportnote  without needing to practice or train, but refuses to participate in any club unless its members can beat him fair and square. Eventually he explains to his friends that he tried being the "school hero", but the people who actually had to work to get where they were resented him for just having skill handed to him on a silver platter, and he ended up being shunned and hated, which was why he transferred to this new school in the first place.
  • A protagonist example exists in Sonic the Hedgehog himself. He always manages to foil whatever scheme the villains have, and his sheer charisma has most of the cast looking up to him. And Sonic is very much aware of his status too.
  • Mario himself. Going through all his accomplishments would take all day.
  • Sanger Zonvolt from Super Robot Wars. A Large Ham whose only real weakness is that his mecha's attacks all cost energy. He gains Ace status during the Earth Cradle where he takes on a cyborg zombie version of himself from another dimension in a duel, accidentally destroys a bunker that was supposed to withstand the apocalypse, and then one hit kills a boss. Like Kamina he can say the cheesiest crap and make it look badass.
    Sanger Zonvolt: I am Sanger Zonvolt! The sword that cleaves evil!
  • Tales of the Abyss: Van Grants is the Ace in a world that's just a few competent civilians short of being a World of Badass and, in a weird way, while he's very much a broken one, he's also a straight one... to the villains.
  • By reading his CV, it is clear Santino from Tales of Monkey Island was every bit the ace... Just too bad that by the time you meet him, he's been dead for decades. None of his crew-members seem to have realized this, however, as they still think he's awesome.
  • Saxton Hale from Team Fortress 2.
  • In Tokimeki Memorial 1, main heroine Shiori Fujisaki is gorgeous, booksmart, kind-hearted, athletic, feminine, popular... What does she not have, as the "golden girl" of Kirameki High? Ah, she's very picky in regards to boyfriends... Well, you can still try to woo her and become her Victorious Childhood Friend! Unless you choose to court other girls, that is.
  • Lara Croft from the Tomb Raider series. She has excellent acrobatic and fighting skills, and iconic sex appeal. She is broadly intelligent with a witty sense of humor, and can speak multiple different languages. Not to mention she owns a fortune, living in a manor and has her own butler.
  • Maniac from Wing Commander straddles the line between actually being The Ace and merely pretending to be—he starts as a reckless nutcase with a superiority complex, but eventually becomes every bit as formidable as he thinks he is, with two thousand confirmed kills by the start of Wing Commander Prophecy.
  • A weapon example in The Monster Hunter Series. The newest weapon, the "battle tonfas", in unite is critized for being a weapon that exceled in way too many aspects and ruined the competetive balance, rendering some other weapons close to obsolete. It has the mobility and versality of sword and shield, the fire rate of dual blades, the charge-gauge-based special attacks like a charged axe, but with spontaneous damage output like wyvern fire from a gunlance. On top of it all, it has a jumping move and can keep attacking mid air. Oh, did I mention that it can do both IMPACT and CUTTING damage by utilizing the gauge and is therefore the quickest impact weapon you can use to knock out a monster? Japanese fans said that this weapon has at once put lance, hammer, dual blades and insect glaive all to tears.
  • The three player characters from the Dragon Age series (the Warden, Hawke, and the Inquisitor) are all recognized as this in universe.
  • Mike from Jagged Alliance.
  • The heroic Superman from the prime universe in Injustice: Gods Among Us. He's considered the very model of a hero and is looked up to by all the other heroes on his world, and generally regarded In-Universe as one of the noblest and most powerful heroes of them all, which is really saying something. And then when he's finally pulled into the !Injustice-verse, he thoroughly lives up to his reputation, proceeding to effortlessly defeat the most powerful of the Regime's enforcers in quick succession before beating his own evil counterpart into submission.
  • In Starcraft II, November "Nova" Terra is one of the Dominion's most elite Ghost assassins. She completed her training in record time (two and a half years, instead of four) and her psychic powers are on par with former Ghost and present-day zerg queen Sarah Kerrigan.
  • This is the defining trait of Valkyrie Drive -Bhikkhuni- Koharu Tsukikage. Fittingly, she's a perfect foil for Rinka Kagurazaka, the game's main character.
  • The Champions in Pokémon are considered to be the strongest Trainers in the region, and are invariably the Final Boss of the game they appear in. Even getting the chance to fight them requires you to obtain eight Gym Badges/four Island stamps, traverse the local Victory Road, and defeat the Elite Four. They have high-levelled, well-trained, balanced teams, and can be very difficult to defeat if you don't know what you're doing. Or even if you do, in some cases.
    • Pokémon Red and Blue have your rival, implied to be the first Champion of Kanto. He has a type-balanced team, and while his Pokemon aren't going to be anything you've never seen before, they are going to be strong enough to catch you off-guard. Even worse, back when the games originally came out, you had no idea he existed. You're only told that there is a fifth trainer to defeat after you've defeated the last of the Elite Four.
    • Pokémon Gold and Silver have Lance, a Dragon-type trainer who establishes his character earlier in the game when he has his Dragonite use Hyper Beam on a member of Team Rocket. Not a Pokemon owned by Team Rocket, a human. He's also a cheating bastard, because he has Pokemon with impossible levels and movesets. Should you obtain eight more badges after beating him, you can face off against Red, the protagonist of the previous game, who has the highest-levelled team in the entire series, and who is talked up throughout the game.
    • Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire is an interesting one. If you're playing the originals or the remakes, you're up against Steven Stone, a rich heir with impressively powerful Steel- and Rock-type Pokemon. In the remakes, he'll even be able to Mega Evolve his Metagross, turning an already-powerful Pokemon into a complete nightmare. Should you be playing Emerald, you'll fight Wallace instead, and while Wallace is an easier fight, his Water-types are still no pushover.
    • Pokémon Diamond and Pearl has Cynthia, who is considered to be one of the most difficult fights in the entire series. Her team isn't type-based and consists of high-level, powerful Pokemon with perfect stats, one of which has no weaknesses. Her ace is her Garchomp, a Pokemon that is feared to this day for being nightmarishly fast and strong, and which can probably sweep your team on its own if you're not prepared for it.
    • Pokémon Black and White has Alder, who is something of a Broken Ace. When you finally get around to fighting him, you'll find that the "broken" part doesn't stop him from being a nightmare to fight, as his team sports things like Volcarona. But he's not the final boss, he's a Bonus Boss. The real ace is N, who defeats Alder shortly before you get there and becomes the Champion himself. N has a Legendary Pokemon on his team. Enough said.
    • Two years later in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, Alder has been replaced by Iris, a sweet little girl who uses Dragon-types like Lance before her. Don't be fooled by the cutesy princess outfit. Dragon-types were completely broken in this generation, and Iris has one of the most dreaded Pokemon in the series on her team.
    • Pokémon X and Y are generally considered to be the easiest Pokemon games, but that doesn't mean that Kalos's resident Champion is an easy fight. Diantha is notable for being the first Champion in terms of game release to have Mega Evolution available to her in the form of her Mega Gardevoir, which has a monstrous Special Attack stat and can do ridiculous damage with Moonblast if you let it.
    • Pokémon Sun and Moon and their sequels have an unusual example: you're the Champion. As in, you beat the Elite Four and take your throne, then face off your first challenger in the form of either Kukui or Hau. From the way everyone else treats you, it's clear that you're now considered to be The Ace. Nevertheless, Kukui is no slouch. Everyone in Alola talks him up as a master Trainer, and he gets respect from everyone he meets. He's known to use competitive-level tactics in the fight, and he'll have the starter that didn't get used on his team, as well as access to its Z-Move.
    • Red, the original protagonist from the first gen games, is canonically and in-universe considered this even compared to other champions who are already aces. His rival is also considered this and similarly to Red, considered a degree above other champions and is an ace in his own respect. Blue, his rival, is considered this to a lesser degree than Red, but both Red and Blue are considered so good that they have titles that differentiate them from regular champions and are regarded as "Battle Legends". It also shows in-universe as Red is usually the Bonus Boss and his team also contains the highest leveled Pokemon that an NPC has in the series outside of Battle Towers where levels are automatically set.
  • Almost every character in Danganronpa is this in one way or another, given the title of "Ultimate" because they are the best at their respective talent.
  • The protagonists of the Shin Megami Tensei: Persona series tend to be this from the third game onward. They're all Chick Magnets who won the Superpower Lottery with their exclusive ability to utilize multiple Personas as the users of the wild card. They also tend to be extremely talented in a variety of fields such as cooking, the arts, and leadership, invariably becoming the charismatic leader of their respective groups. They're also incredibly sociable, kind-hearted, and helpful, going out of their way to help up to 21 people per game with their personal problems.
  • In Europa Universalis IV, if a ruler is born with a 6/6/6 score it means he's the best at administration, diplomacy and warfare. The ruler who comes closest to that at the game start, is King Skanderbeg of Albania with a 6/5/6.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: