Category: Nier

In preparation for the eventual release of The Witcher 2 I find myself once again struck with a monumental problem with The Witcher. This is not a problem with gameplay, or graphics, or story but with the overall character itself. It’s the kind of video game that goes awry in the first 15 seconds because the main characters face flashed on your screen and you almost dive under whatever you’re sitting on because you’re afraid it’s so ugly it may just try and steal your soul.

Every video game has an ugly character or two and I can overlook them. But I find it difficult to get connected to, feel empathy for, or wish for the survival of my main character when all I can think is “Holy crap why did they make him so damn ugly?” I’m supposed to be living for a period of this person’s life. I’m supposed to assume their role and identify with them. Why would I want to? Is it supposed to be fun to have children and women run screaming at my very appearance and have farmers chase me with pitchforks until I eventually burn to death in a windmill (name that movie)? No, its not fun.

I know, I’m shallow. I’m a guy, its what I do.

Now you may be asking yourselves “What video games have such god awful ugly characters?” Well you’re in luck, I’ve made a short list for you:

Geralt of Riva: The Witcher

Oh crap, I think he just ate my soul.

Geralt of Riva: The Witcher/The Witcher 2

Let’s start out with the very reason for the post in the first place. Geralt of Riva is a damn ghoul. I mean just look at him, what redeeming quality is there in him. Everything about The Witcher’s main character screams “I’m going to sneak into your house in the middle of the night and abscond your virgin daughter.” He has all the look of Brett Michaels and none of the awesomeness.

And the most intriguing facet of The Witcher is the fact that you not only have numerous romantic conquests, but you get rewarded for them. Apparently when the world is going to shit and monsters roam the countryside any man will do when you need your quick lovin’ fix.

I can only imagine they sat in their design meeting and said “Man, Legolas was awesome. Lets make someone bad ass like him but instead of a bow lets give him a sword. That’s awesome! Now lets give him a large scar because scars are awesome! Okay now age him 30 years. Now make him look and sound like he smoked a pack a day for each of those 30 years. That’s AWESOME!”

Miranda Lawson: Mass Effect 2 - Ugly Video Game Characters

Please stop looking at me.

Miranda Lawson: Mass Effect 2

Oh how we here at PtC love our BioWare and pretty much everything that BioWare does. That being said, in Mass Effect 2, what the hell did they put on Miranda Lawson’s chin? What? What do you mean? That is her chin? Dear god why? Miranda should have been amazing! You start with Yvonne Strahovski give her a space ship and a gun and have her kill things. Throw in a sex scene and bam! That right there is a recipe for smokin’ hottie. Instead you get that…thing. Now she’s not all bad. There are absolutely worse looking models in the video game world. In fact everything before the Playstation 2 era is a bit…well….jagged and pointy.

Miranda Lawson Sex Scene - Mass Effect 2 - Ugly Video Game Characters

Mass Effect 2 has a butterface

The flipside is that the rest of Miranda is pretty damn nice. I find myself wanting to like her more. I feel this overwhelming compulsion to legitimately want to say to myself “I can cope with that” but to be honest I really cant. Is there a patch BioWare can issue that can fix her? Seriously?

In fact yes: BioWare (I know you’re reading this) please from all of us here at Polish the Console do something to fix Miranda Lawson’s god awful face.  Shave th chin down a bit. Make her less manly. Give her a softer look that makes the ass kickery all that much more…ass kicky.

Never in my life has underboob ever been seen in conjunction with the overwhelming desire to yell “PUT ON A HELMET!!”

Want to know the real head scratcher? We also think she’s hot. Explain that! So much so that she made into our Pin Up Gallery. Hell, even  we’re confused.

Nier: Gestalt - Old Nier

Nier Hungry

The Father: Nier

Once again I would like to state that I loved Nier. I thought it was awesome. I’m actually questioning its placement on this list because I loved it so much. I can play Nier for hours on end and never get tired of it. Nier is like having an ugly baby. You know its ugly. Whenever anyone looks at it they think its ugly. Nier is just that ugly. But you know what? It’s your ugly baby and you love it no matter what. That’s what Nier is to me. Nier is my ugly baby.

But Nier also tests the limits of how ugly something can be and still illicit a positive emotional response. Sure he’s supposed to be old. Sure he’s supposed to look like absolute hell. Sure his life pretty much mimics Gary Busey’s. But couldn’t they have at least dressed him in something relatively presentable? What’s this, no shirt? Are those raging pythons too big to be contained by anything that isn’t made of solid steel?

Marcus Fenix - Gears of War - Ugly Video Game Characters

Can he even wear a real shirt anymore?

Marcus Fenix: Gears of War/Gears of War 2

His can’t. Not at all. Not even mildly. Marcus Fenix of Gears of War cannot, at all, wear a normal shirt. Look at him. His wrist is the same size as his neck. Is this some medical condition we need to be aware of? How does he pick up nickels with those sausages he calls fingers? Can he even fit his hand into a pocket? This is a man that will crush a door knob when he tries to grasp it. I feel bad for any woman who attempts to hook up with him. If Marcus even thinks about it the woman feels sore.

Then there’s his face. Marcus Fenix looks like the guy you see out and around who never wears sleeves, always poses for the camera (usually some lame ass kissy face), and acts like a total douche to everyone around him while he sips his Long Island. You know who I’m talking about. It’s called the Jersey Shore. He looks like the kind of guy who would make a legitimate attempt to name himself after his favorite gym verb. I bet his friends call him Flex, or Bulk, or Pump. I just call him Giggles.

Killzone 2 - Ugly Video Game Characters

I petition to send them all the

Sev: Killzone 2

I’m sorry. Did I say Sev? I mean the whole damn team. Killzone 2 takes place on Helghan which is supposed to be an ugly planet full of ugly people. Good. Lets bomb them. They are pricks anyway. But holy crap can you throw at least one attractive team member our way so we can say “this guy would be fun to go out and watch a ball game with” instead of “why did he just reference Garza’s butthole and why is he so familiar with its odor?”

I mean yeah it sucks that Garza dies but I was kind of relieved I didn’t have to look at him anymore. Now what do I have to do in order to go rogue and not look at the rest of my team anymore? And for that matter what do I have to do in order to totally remove all mirrors from my immediate area at all times?

Max Payne: Max Payne

You know what? If you really want to know my thoughts, just read the caption below:

Max Payne - Max Payne - Ugly Video Game Characters

Can someone please get Max a stool softener from that gift shop in the back?

Now I ask you, who’s your ugly video game character of choice?

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Nier: Gestalt - Square Enix

Nier: Replicant - Young Nier

This is not you

Nier: Gestalt - Old Nier

This is you

Here in the States we can’t get the video game Nier: Replicant where you play as a young seemingly spry lad with white hair and large sword. Instead you get a character that is quite the opposite. You get to play as a large caveman like character who goes by the moniker “The Father” and bears a striking resemblance to Gary Busey. This is not necessarily a bad thing as I for one am a huge fan of Mr. Busey and all he does…partly out of fear that he may appear next to my bed one night with that…that grin. But I digress. The only real difference between Nier: Gestalt and Nier: Replicant is the age of the main character and their relationship with Yonah. As “The Father” you assume the role of (you guessed it) her father, while in Nier: Replicant you play as her brother.

As stated above the states you play the video game as her father attempting to find a cure for the aptly named “Black Scrawl” that begins to engulf her. Where her mother may be I haven’t the foggiest and leaving a teenager up to their own devices while Dad’s out engaging the world in combat and completing quests has bad idea written all over it. Add in the fact that she’s sick and you begin to unravel a blanket of bad parenting. But it’s this bad parenting that makes this video game fricking AWESOME. I don’t want to play a video game as a loving father who sits by his daughters bed side applying a cold compress while creatures called “Shades” are attacking travelers and miscellaneous sheep. NO! I want to be the guy out there kicking shade (and sheep) ass with my magical talking book and sword the size of a sofa. There’s a sentence I never imagined I would ever have a reason to type.

This is a video game on a whole different level. To understand what you’re getting in to all you really have to do is watch the opening video. Seriously. It’s total rage before Square Enix’s logo even pop’s up. At the time I didn’t know who was yelling but it was love at first sight.

Neir: Controls

From the onset the controls are simple and easy. They don’t throw anything new or innovative at you. This is where the problem lies. There are so many opportunities to take advantage of something like the PS3 controller that they never capitalize on.

For example there a few times in Nier you have to go fishing. In order to fish you have to make Nier “pull” the rod away from the fish. Naturally the fish will swim any way it can to get away from the hook which is all well and good, but  all you really have to do as a the player is tilt the right stick in the opposite direction of the fish. There’s little skill or even fun involved. Why not have the player at least tilt the controller in the direction they need to pull. Something? Anything?

Hell, thanks to Heavy Rain I half expect developers to have me literally stand in a bucket of water with controller in hand flicking it like a fishing rod while I use the joystick as the reel. Now that would be a fun experience.

For sheer lack of living up to the potential I have to give the controls a 4 out of 5

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Neir: Gameplay

Nier's First Weapon

When you look like Gary Busey even a pipe is bad ass.

To help ramp up the “Nier is awesome” factor you start the game off fighting a swarm of shades with a metal pipe. During this fight you learn the wonderful integration of the magic and combat system as you summon a ginormous hand, throw ginormous lances, and beat shades up with a ginormous metal pipe. You also hit level 30 in the first 5 minutes… using a metal pipe. Seriously…you smack shit with pipe.

Then the true RPG experience begins. The rank is stripped away and you start back at level one (sadly without the pipe) and you receive a series of quests from local townsfolk who seem to be too lazy to get up from the local fountain and go get their own damn mutton. You do everything you would expect to do. You fish, you grind, you hunt for drops from animals, you collect experience to level up, you grind, you farm, and you grind a little more.

Remember this published by Squre Enix who just released Final Fantasy XIII. Final Fantasy XIII was essentially Square Enix saying “Move from point A to point E by going through B, C, and D. In that order. At that speed. No exceptions. You have to. Why? Because we said so. Want to explore? You can’t. Why? Because f*ck you, that’s why. And stop asking about a damn remake.”

Nier was a breath of fresh air. It was a nostalgic return to RPG roots that I have been missing as of late. Gameplay gets a perfect 5 out of 5

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Nier: Graphics

Graphics are the only real problem with Nier. It’s a total visual turd. Every now and again you will see something that looks nice but these moments are few and far between. The trees are SQUARE!! Logs are TRIANGLES!! Kaine…well she’s perfectly formed gothic lolita. Essentially they spent more time making sure Kaine’s boobs came out great but the rest of the game looks like it belongs on a PS2 or XBox. Notice the lack of a 360 after that? Yeah that’s what you’re getting yourself into. The characters are about the only thing that look like they belong on the current gen systems.

Nier, Kaine, Emil and some dead wolves

Nier: Chalk full of totally uninspiring surroundings but gorgeous characters

Ultimately the graphics just don’t do anything for…well…anybody or anything. They’re getting Nier a 2 out of 5

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Nier: Story

This is a tale of a fathers love and willingness to give the finger to what social services says good parenting is and go just about anywhere and do just about anything for Yonah. More than once I find myself getting warm fuzzies for Nier’s willingness to fight pretty much everything around him for his only child. The story is full of twists and turns that makes you want to keep playing well into the night and show up to work the next day disheveled with puffy red eyes.

Nier’s story gets a 4 out of 5.

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Nier: Overall

Ultimately the graphics hurt the video game. Its a truly magnificent game. It’s a great return to an RPG style I have missed. It looks like total crap but plays like a dream. It has a lot going for it, but not enough to push it above a 3 out of 5. I will, however,  say that this is one 3 out of 5 that you need to buy, play, and love. Maybe cuddle up with a bit. Given that its a confusingly ugly game though we could give it an confusingly ugly score like PBBN9JCPR8H. Make sense of that and you win the weekly prize.

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Seriously though: Here is Nier and here is Busey. Am I the only one seeing this?

Really? They both look effing crazy.

Didn’t like what you read above? Got something to say about it? Hit us up in the comments below.

Additional Busey pictures are encouraged. I want to make a shrine.



Gary Busey

Gary Busey

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