The Top 100 Videogame Villains
9 7.1 0100. Donkey Kong Junior - Atari 7800
#100 - Mario(!?!?)
Mario as a villain seems like a novel concept these days -- enough so that we're a little sad it hasn't happened again since. We're not necessarily surprised though. Nintendo might feel a little... hesitant to have their flagship character keeping an animal in chains, which is why Mario as a villain in Donkey Kong Jr. is so interesting.
It's a relic from a time when Nintendo didn't have that face yet -- when Mario wasn't a billion dollar brand, and when Nintendo could take chances with its characters in a way they seem pathologically unable -- or unwilling -- to do today. This Mario is a total jerk, holding Donkey Kong Jr.'s dad hostage. As far as villains go, that's pretty high on the evil totem pole (even if Mario is throwing bear traps and bees that can be defeated by... fruit). The worst part of all may be that once Donkey Kong Jr. manages to free his poor imprisoned dad, Jr. has to do the whole thing all over again, as the game just starts over.
This all makes Mario look kind of like a hypocrite when he gets angry over Koopa's latest princess-snatching escapade, doesn't it?
9 5.4 099. Q*bert - PlayStation
#99 - Coily
He's big, he's bad, he's a purple snake that looks like a spring. Or is it the other way around? Regardless, this guy is one of the most annoying baddies found in the classic arcade game, Q*Bert. Sure there are other hog-nosed goblins and sunglass-wearing green boogers bouncing around Q*Bert's floating pyramids, but Coily hunts down the orange hose nose with reckless abandon. No matter where you turn, Coily is right there behind you, jumping on every block you've stepped on. It's no wonder Q*Bert is so foul mouthed. To add insult to injury, the only way to defeat him is by jumping on a floating disc, which apparently freaks out Coily so much he throws himself off of the pyramid.
Yeah. HE THROWS HIMSELF OFF OF A FLOATING PYRAMID! If ritual suicide isn't badass, I don't know what is. But it doesn't end there! Coily is even the head of a motorcycle gang in the short lived CBS Saturday morning cartoon, Saturday Supercade. You read that right, a mother effin' motorcycle gang!
I know. It's crazy right? But it was the '80's. Everyone was doing a lot of drugs.
471 8.3 098. Pokemon: Blue Version - Game Boy
#98 - Gary Oak
While the Pokémon games have had a number of rivals over the years, the first and most famous is the cocky little brat, Gary Oak. Although the character's default name was Red or Blue (depending on which version you owned) in the original series, the name Gary was an option and is consistent with the anime series. Regardless of what you call him, it's hard to label him an actual villain. After all, he's only trying to do the same thing that every other Pokémon trainer is: be the very best, like no one ever was. But why does he have to be such a douche about it? Gary makes his intentions clear from moment one in the videogame when he tries to block you from getting a town map. Sure he may be the grandson of the great Pokémon professor, but that kid needs his butt kicked. Everywhere you go in Pokémon Red/Blue, Gary is there first, taunting you, challenging you, and then insulting you when you win. It doesn't matter how fast you play, how many trainers you destroy, Gary is one step ahead of you, earning all the badges you earn before you even get to the town. Even at the very end, it's Gary who is your final challenge before you can truly win. And while you manage to get every badge, defeat the Elite Four, and become the ultimate trainer, the fact is that Gary Oak beat you to the punch.
177 7.6 097. Mortal Kombat - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
#97 - Shang Tsung
Shang Tsung might not have the same standing in Outworld as Shao Kahn, but his legacy is more wide-spread. Shang Tsung is an extremely powerful sorcerer, and he uses his shape-shifting talents to manipulate his enemies. Shang Tsung served as the final boss in the first Mortal Kombat, following the player's confrontation with Goro. In the battle, Shang Tsung transforms into different characters from the game, forcing players to adjust to the fight on the fly.
Shang Tsung is also one of the most long-running characters in the franchise, and he has appeared in most of the Mortal Kombat games as a playable character. When playing as Shang Tsung, players can morph into different characters, on top of being able to perform Shang Tsung's character-specific techniques, like launching a fiery skull at your opponent and draining their energy. This energy drain feeds directly into Shang Tsung's story, as the sorcerer needs to steal the souls of others in order to survive. Shang Tsung used these powers to reign over the Mortal Kombat tournament for many years, twisting the competition into a corrupted affair that was far removed from its once honorable nature.
Considering Shang Tsung's devious powers and his cruel methods, his status as a reputable villain of the series is well deserved.
147 8.1 096. Full Throttle - PC Games
#96 - Adrian Ripburger
If there's one thing we do not like, it is evil businessmen. The only thing worse? An evil businessman who has henchmen. Well, Adrian Ripburger falls into the latter category which means that even the voice of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill voices the villain in Full Throttle) isn't enough to save him from being brought down by Ben, the classic do-gooder. The exchange between our hero and the antagonist of Full Throttle begins with Ripburger asking Ben to escort a powerful CEO to a meeting at Corley Motors. Ben declines and the game is off to the races from there. Two henchmen knock out Ben and hold him captive as the rest of his biker gang takes the CEO to the meeting. It's later discovered that Ripburger was trying to setup Ben and his gang to take the fall for the CEO's eventual murder which Ripburger, of course, organized. While Adrian has no real powers other than his cunning business know-how, he was very nearly able to reach the top of Corley Motors. If only if it weren't for that pesky last will and testament of the long-gone CEO -- so close, yet so far, Ripburger!
134 7.8 095. Jet Grind Radio - Sega Dreamcast
#95 - Captain Onishima
Captain Onishima is the bane of rudies everywhere. In the not too distant future of Tokyo-To, freedom of expression is straight up illegal and Captain Onishima is there to make sure no punk kids with spray paint mess up his pretty city. He's got the entire police force behind him to try and stop anyone who wants to cover up a billboard with some sweet tags.
What makes Captain Onishima so memorable is that he's like an angry little Japanese Dirty Harry. He runs around the city in his trenchcoat and tie, firing at the GGs whenever they're in sight. He's a furious man, who stamps his feet angrily and swears at those rocket skating vandals that make him look like a fool. The rest of the police force are chumps, and you can skate away, even when they're clinging to your legs. But when Onishima comes in you know it just got real. Captain Onishima doesn't try to jump on you, oh no. He just pulls out his revolver, and aims for your head. Funny that one man was more trouble than an entire police force, but when Captain Onishima has you in his sights, you better skate your butt off to get away.
1157 8 094. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City - PlayStation 2
#94 - Lance Vance
Drug dealers can't be trusted. They may be friendly with you when it suits their purposes, but in the end all they care about is building up their own fortunes...even if someone's gotta die for it. Lance Vance is the stereotypical 80's drug dealer, with ugly clothes, a love for fast cars, and a mind that's far too easily manipulated. While he starts off as the friend and partner of Tommy Vercetti in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, he's eventually led to believe that Tommy is betraying him. Ultimately this leads to Lance selling Tommy out at the most inopportune moment possible, forcing Tommy to fight for his life against a rival drug dealer.
Betrayal isn't anything that a host of other candidates for the best villains haven't done as well, but Lance is notable because the scene where you kill him was such a powerful moment in the GTA series. Killing him may have been an easy decision for Tommy, but it was one of the first times that a game had developed an interpersonal relationship between two characters only to have it ultimately end in tragedy. Say what you will about GTA's gameplay, but developer RockStar's always been a company that's pushed mature themes in its games, and the story of Lance Vance is a great example of this.
20 2.6 093. Dragon's Lair - Famicom and NES
#93 - Singe
Dragons seem to be total jerks. I mean, they've got this reputation for hording vast amounts of wealth, and have no need for it. Supposedly it is there to lure unsuspecting adventurers to their doom, but the question remains - where did the gold come from in the first place?
Singe, the titular dragon of Dragon's Lair is one such wealth-hording dragon. Dirk, the game's hero, must brave countless obstacles before he can face Singe and rescue the totally smokin' Daphne. From giant colored balls to acid-filled vials, skeletal claws to lava-men, Singe's castle has arguably the best security system ever seen. Should a player make it that far, the Singe component contains some of the twitchiest parts of the game, and requires the most trial-and-error and straight-up path memorizing. Sitting right next to the beast, in a magical glass sphere, is Daphne. Why is she in a floating bubble? Who knows! All that matters is that you can kinda see her nipples.
Considering Dragon's Lair was an arcade game that cost two quarters in an era when one was standard, it could be a safe assumption that all those gold coins Singe sits upon came from the pockets of kids from 1983.
611 8.8 092. Metal Gear Solid - PlayStation
#92 - Sniper Wolf
Sniper Wolf probably deserves to be higher on our list. Don't believe us? She broke Snake without ever laying a finger or bullet on him. When Snake and Meryl start down that long hallway in Metal Gear Solid, the bad news laser of a faraway rifle pops up and draws a bead on the woman. In an instant, Snake knows he's screwed. Sniper Wolf takes her shot, drops Meryl, and keeps the woman alive.
Snake's love interest is now bait, and there's nothing our hero can do about. That's effed up. Players go from feeling like a badass solider to being completely helpless. Worse, by the time you get back to help Meryl out, the bad guys have whisked her away.
That alone would probably have gotten the little lady who doesn't believe in undershirts on our list, but after all that, players were treated to an epic boss battle -- sniper rifle versus sniper rifle in the snow. Sure, you could've gone cheap and used rockets to beat Sniper Wolf, but a warrior this cool deserved to be taken out in style.
940 8 091. Final Fantasy VIII - PlayStation
#91 - Seifer
Although Seifer Almasy is not the main antagonist of Final Fantasy VIII, he serves as Squall's rival and confronts the player's party on numerous occasions throughout the game's story. Seifer was originally a child staying at Edea's orphanage, along with the other heroes of the game, though his bullying habits started early. Seifer eventually joined the ranks of the students at Balamb Garden and headed up the Disciplinary Committee, along with his friends (and devoted followers) Fujin and Raijin.
Seifer eventually joins Sorceress Ultimecia, one of the lead villains in Final Fantasy VIII, and serves as her Knight. This is partially a result of his failure to pass the Balamb Garden SeeD exam, as well as subtle brainwashing employed by the sorceress. Seifer makes for a great rival, as his appearance is virtually a mirror image of Squall's. Both young men have mirrored scars, which they inflicted on each other during an intense training duel, and both men wield the powerful Gunblade weapon.
Although Seifer aids Ultimecia in establishing Time Compression, he's not a particularly evil character. He does what he thinks is right (and was under Ultimecia's influence) and eventually repents for his actions. At the game's conclusion, Seifer can be seen looking up at the passing Balamb Garden and smiling happily, reunited with Fujin and Raijin once more.
88 8.3 090. The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind - Xbox
#90 - Dagoth Ur
Those taking an extended stay on the island of Vvardenfell might want to get vaccinated for Corprus, the disease created and spread by Dagoth Ur. Symptoms of Corprus include mutations, wild visions and dreams, loss of control, and death. Dagoth Ur, the Chimer who dwelt deep beneath Red Mountain for more than an eon, was a being so powerful that he bordered on divinity. His history is long and complex, but the important points are that he gained control and used the power of an ancient artifact known as the Heart of Lorkhan, and began to spread Corprus to the inhabitants of Vvardenfell, turning them into mutants and slaves.
He also began to utilize ancient artifacts known as Kagrenac's Tools to assemble an enormous golem to aid him in his task. Whereas the standard villain is mean, brutish and forceful, Dagoth Ur is educated, eloquent, and indirect, kept within the Ghostfence by the Tribunal, and using his Ash Vampires to do his bidding beyond the magical barrier. Travelling into his lair, Dagoth speaks to you. "Come to me, through fire and war, I welcome you." His calm voice a contrast to the image that awaits you through those ancient steel doors - a sinewy, masked figure who doesn't hesitate to fry you to death with fireballs.
552 8.6 089. BioShock - Xbox 360
#89 - Sander Cohen
No one is as high maintenance as an artist, save an artist who feels they're an underappreciated genius. Add to that the power of life and death in the form of security and an army of splicers, and Sander Cohen fits the villainous bill. Unlike other baddies in Bioshock, like Andrew Ryan and Fontaine/Atlas, Cohen is a more human foil for Jack with more concrete, petty needs -- specifically the deaths (and documentation thereof) of four "betrayers." He walks the line between completely insane and just cogent enough to be really dangerous, and the ultimate decision to kill or spare him once he's gotten what he wants from the player makes him memorable in a game where people who get in Jack's way have a habit of kindly dying. We like Sander because it seems like a small step from his unspliced persona - that of an egomaniacal artist with delusions of omni-importance - to his final form of nutball. Then again, this seems to be the M.O. for all of the major villains in the BioShock games, as each of them are subtle shades away from sane, making them more believable.
355 7.4 088. Metroid Prime 2: Echoes - GameCube
#88 - Dark Samus/Sa-X
Pretty much every popular Nintendo character has a "dark side", from Mario (Wario) to Luigi (Waluigi) to Link (Dark Link) to Star Fox (Star Wolf). So why should the Metroid series be any different? It's pretty much the Nintendo way, after all.
Metroid Prime 2: Echoes introduced the idea of Dark Samus, a creepily evil doppelganger of the female bounty hunter composed of Phazon, wreaking havoc in the Metroid universe. Dark Samus was born out of the explosion from the final battle of Metroid Prime. Samus' DNA merged with the remains of the defeated Metroid Prime, and in Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption he/she/it's running around calling the shots with the evil Space Pirates.
Even when Dark Samus is defeated, it's never really over with this evil creature, and we're sure that the finale in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption really isn't the end of Dark Samus. Even in Super Smash Bros. Brawl hints that Nintendo's not quite done with the concept.
1078 8.3 087. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas - PlayStation 2
#87 - Officer Tenpenny
The Grand Theft Auto games have always starred bigger-than-life villains, but there's just something truly sinister about San Andreas' Officer Frank Tenpenny. It's not just because Samuel L. Jackson voices him, although his baritone absolutely drips with evil. It's because Tenpenny is an amalgamation of some of the worst crooked cops that ever walked this side of the screen. Tenpenny is both the man behind the curtain and a terrorist, never afraid to get his hands dirty for what he considers to be the greater good. Unfortunately, the "greater good" means working with some gangs just to punish others and line Tenpenny's own pockets along the way.
That twisted sense of right and wrong coming from Tenpenny is what makes the player grow comfortable with the mayhem CJ must unleash in San Andreas. If the cop is the ultimate bad guy, then a little gang-banging can hardly be considered evil, right? Especially if that cop is allowing crack to pour into San Andreas in order to wipe out competing gangs and get rich. The climax of San Andreas, when the acquittal of Tenpenny results in a riot like those that burned Los Angeles in 1992, solidifies Tenpenny's status as a wretched villain worthy of this list. Innocents are dying. The city is burning. And all Tenpenny cares about is himself and his suitcase of cash.
115 8.1 086. Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary - PC Games
#86 - Jacqueline Natla
If there's one thing that makes a good villain, it's immortality. Jacqueline Natla claimed to be immortal in Tomb Raider: Anniversary. We're tempted to believe her as she took a very creepy Atlantean, demonic form in the game. Her case for immortality is aided by the fact that she's been around since the 1940s and looks pretty damn good for her age. Apparently, she was originally unleashed from Los Alamos, New Mexico where a test nuclear bomb detonation destroyed what was holding her and set her loose on the world. Fast-forward 60 years and she's still up to no good.
Besides the usual powers that come with being an immortal demon of sorts, Jacqueline has the typical bad guy ability of being able to talk her way out of situations that would otherwise lead to her death. She's escaped captivity plenty of times, including once surviving a strike from Thor's hammer. If there's one quality that we'd like to bestow upon Jacqueline, it's that she is one of the most resilient baddies we have on our list.
152 7.3 085. Mortal Kombat - Super famicom and SNES
#85 - Sub-Zero
Casual gamers might not know that the name "Sub-Zero" can actually apply to a number of Mortal Kombat characters. The first Sub-Zero appeared in the original Mortal Kombat and quickly became one of the franchise's most recognizable fighters. This Sub-Zero, however, was eventually replaced by his "good guy" younger brother. Both siblings descended from a father that belonged to the Outworld Cryomancers.
The first Sub-Zero was aligned with the forces of evil but was eventually defeated by another iconic Mortal Kombat character, Scorpion. Once defeated, Sub-Zero would eventually become the undead Noob Saibot. After the first Mortal Kombat, Sub-Zero's younger brother would replace him for all the subsequent games.
Sub-Zero is a Cryomancer, which gives him the power to manipulate ice. In battle, Sub-Zero can freeze his opponents, which gives him the opportunity to land follow-up attacks. Sub-Zero also has a slide move which can trip up his enemies, as well as a teleport technique which was introduced in Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe.
Sub-Zero's Fatality is just as recognizable as his appearance, as he rips an opponent's spine out of their body. This brutal technique perfectly reflects the franchise's gory aesthetics. It is a testament to Sub-Zero's popularity that he has appeared in every major Mortal Kombat title and has even starred in a Mortal Kombat spin-off.
453 8.7 084. God of War III - PlayStation 3
#84 - Cronos
Cronos isn't just a badass villain - he's the best God of War boss according to IGN.com. It's not that Cronos is super-evil, but he still technically started the cycle of sons-overthrowing-fathers which Zeus tried to prevent by killing Kratos. However, the main reason he's on this list is because his fight against Kratos in God of War III is just awesome. When you finally square off against the big guy in the third title, it's one of the most technically impressive and gigantic battles you'll see in a videogameThe Titan slams his hand down in front of Kratos, his fingernail is bigger than most garage doors, and you realize it's up to you to take this mammoth out...with two blades that aren't fit to be this guy's toothpick.
From there, it's up to you to read Cronos' moves, make your way up the beast, and figure out how the hell you're going to kill him.
The big man earns his spot on our list because he's a blast to play and really encompasses what you want out of a God of War boss fight - gore, action, violence and odds you have no business overcoming.
122 7.5 083. Golden Axe - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
#83 - Death Adder
Death Adder is not a snake. Despite being named after one of the more venomous reptiles in the world, Death Adder is actually an evil tyrant who attempts to usurp the real King in the game Golden Axe. He's a huge, typical looking barbarian, complete with burly helmet that just screams "I murdered your family." While most of us never got a chance to fight him unless our pockets were deep with quarters (or fortunate enough to own the Genesis version of Golden Axe), countless failed attempts were made at storming his castle.
Granted, he wasn't a particularly inventive villain, but Death Adder makes it into the list solely because he was instrumental in the personal gaming history of so many people. Tons of quarters were dropped in the epic quest to take him on, and taking him down and reclaiming the titular Golden Axe became, for many, a nerd rite of passage. He recently made a return in the critically scorned Golden Axe: Beast Rider, but players who want to really take him on once again can do so in the various remakes of the original Golden Axe.
162 8.7 082. Day of the Tentacle - PC Games
#82 - Purple Tentacle
Purple Tentacle has some of the grandest schemes for world domination ever seen in a videogame, which is unusual when you consider the era of his troublemaking. He didn't start his life with these domineering tendencies, but a drink from a radiated river sent Purple over the edge into insanity. From that point on, all he cared about was taking over the world and making a planet exclusively for tentacles. To prevent this, Purple's former friend Green Tentacle warns Purple's arch-nemesis of his evil actions. From there, Green and the troop of heroes (including Bernard and Laverne) travel back in time to stop Purple Tentacle from ever gaining the evil gene that sent him into the stage of dementia. Of course our heroes come out on top in the end and Purple's dreams of world domination are dashed just as soon as he thought them up. Will we ever see Purple Tentacle again? Rumors have been swirling for some time about his return, but only time will tell if he ever makes his way back onto our game machines.
88 7.7 081. Earthworm Jim - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
#81 - Psy-Crow
If you're going to design a hero as goofy-cool as Earthworm Jim, you're going to need some equally awesome villains. Evil the Cat, Queen Slug-for-a-Butt... all fine antagonists. But Earthworm Jim's true nemesis, the evil Psy-crow, is easily the best of this insane rogue's gallery. Psy-Crow is actually responsible for the creation of Jim. He allowed the Ultra-high-tech-indestructible-super-space-cyber-suit to slip through his feathers and fall to Earth, where it landed next to a harmless little worm. A few wriggles later, Psy-Crow had himself a mortal enemy.
Psy-Crow remains Earthworm Jim's main enemy throughout his adventures, performing dastardly deeds like kidnapping princesses and throwing puppies out of windows. Really: Psy-Crow throws puppies out of windows. Psy-Crow also loves a good race. Jim must often blast through space alongside Psy-Crow, trying to beat him to the finish line in hopes of thwarting his plots, such as at the end of Earthworm Jim 2 where the hero cannot allow Psy-Crow to get to the church on time (church on time!) and marry Jim's special lady, Princess What's-Her-Name.
15 6.8 080. R-Type - Sega Master System
#80 - Bydo
The Bydo are bio-engineered weapons that mankind created in the 26th century. Intended to destroy an enemy planet, the experiment went horribly wrong (as these things tend to do) and instead attacked its creators. Because of their self-replicating DNA, the Bydo can spread quickly. Mankind was able to send the Bydo packing to another dimension, where they were left to drift in the void of space. Over eons they evolved and developed the ability to time travel and jumped back to the 22nd century to give humans what for. This is where you come in as the pilot of the Arrowhead in R-Type and must single-handedly blast through the waves of incoming Bydo in order to destroy the Core that controls them all. Unfortunately, beating R-Type doesn't mean the end of the conflict because R-Type Final (the last game in the series) takes place back in the 26th century after five hundred years of war. Every enemy you encounter in the series, from the basic drones to the bosses, is a member of the Bydo Empire. One of R-Type's most recognizable features, the "Force" pod that attaches to the player's ship and can be used as a weapon, is actually a piece of Bydo flesh.
13 6.9 079. Prince of Persia - Famicom and NES
#79 - Jafar/Vizier
As in so many videogames, Prince of Persia asks us to rescue a princess. And the reason she needs rescuing is because of Jafar. When the ruler of Persia heads out on a field trip to invade a foreign land he leaves his vizier, Jafar, in charge. Big mistake. First order of business for the newly-appointed evil ruler is to lock up the guy the princess likes. But that's not all -- he gives the princess one hour to marry him, or else she dies. The prince escapes and eventually makes his way to the top of the fortress, of course, where he fights Jafar and wins. Our hero should have killed him, though, because Jafar returns in Prince of Persia 2, where he casts a spell on the Prince that turns him into a beggar and gets him kicked out of the palace. At the end of the sequel Prince does it right, killing Jafar and scattering his ashes. This marks the end of Jafar's reign of terror in the Prince of Persia games. Although another entry was released in the original trilogy and the franchise was reborn in 2003 with the Sands of Time, these more recent games all feature different antagonists.
26 6.9 078. Berzerk - Atari 2600
#78 - Evil Otto
During the Atari days, Evil Otto was one of the most well-known villains. Barging in when players were taking too long in Berzerk, Otto's bouncing smiley face would chase players till he could bring about their doom. Like any true villain, Otto apparently cared little for his minions, often destroying them in pursuit of the player. In some incarnations Otto would run faster than the player, but in most versions of the game Otto was always avoidable so long as you could avoid moving vertically.
Evil Otto didn't have any diabolical intent to take over the world, steal a bunch of money, or kidnap children. He was evil solely because he was out to end your good time. And unlike so many villains of games, Otto was utterly invincible. That's right, Evil Otto was out to kill you and you couldn't do a thing about it. It's one thing to play a game feeling the pressure of trying to break a high score, and quite another thing to be attempting a record while a virtual Terminator is stalking you with a huge smile on its face. While Otto has faded from the spotlight, often being completely unknown to a younger generation of gamers, there's a legion of us who still can't see a smiley face without having flashbacks about his evil grin.
556 8.2 077. The Legend of Zelda - Famicom and NES
#77 - Shadow Link/Dark Link
In Link's second outing on the original Nintendo, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, a strange opponent greets you at the game's end. Instead of a rematch with the pig demon Ganon, you must fight an eerie silhouette of the green clad protagonist himself. The silhouette, known alternately as Dark Link, or Shadow Link, makes for a formidable opponent, mirroring your moves and putting up a seemingly impenetrable defense.
Perhaps Dark Link's most memorable appearance is in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Deep within the infamous Water Temple, one door leads to what appears to be a shallow, ethereal pool with a lone tree growing on an island in the center. While trying to puzzle your way out of this area, Dark Link suddenly appears by the tree with a cryptic message: "Conquer yourself!" In this battle Dark Link is has a talent for parrying your sword attacks, but if you aren't looking for an epic duel you can use the magic spell Din's Fire to make short work of him.
More recently, Dark Link shows up in the final level of the Take 'Em All On Challenge in The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks. It takes some serious skills just to reach him, and his use of bombs and advanced sword skills make this match with your uncanny other the most difficult of all. This sinister clone is uniquely adept at exploiting Link's weaknesses and is one of the most unique enemies you'll encounter in the series.
196 8.2 076. Contra - Famicom and NES
#76 - Red Falcon
With a name like Red Falcon, you'd expect this enemy to be some sort of Native American war chief, or perhaps the Interpol alias of a shadowy international terrorist. The last thing you'd probably expect is a perpetually transforming alien in charge of a worldwide terrorist group bent on world domination. But that's just what players of 1987's Contra found when they confronted the game's nemesis and his eponymous army on the tiny Galuga archipelago. Through successive incarnations it became clear that rapid unexplained mutations weren't just limited to Red Falcon; the series' continuity was also subject to frequent revisions. In fact, some gamers were never entirely clear whether Red Falcon was the gross alien whose brain and heart you had to shoot, or whether it was just the name of his army. We're going to chalk most of this up to mistranslation, but remember, this was the 1980s and everyone was playing fast and loose with, well, everything.
Whatever the case, the big, bad, and oh-so-ugly alien at the heart of the danger in Contra proved to be a worthy foe, one who wouldn't be defeated until you found and shot his gigantic internal organs. Even then, like all good villains, Red Falcon kept coming back again and again, often with reckless disregard for the linear progression of historical time. That alone makes him one of the most powerful enemies around.
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