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Happy Father’s Day: The Best Dads In Video Game History

With Father’s Day coming up this week, we feel that mothers shouldn’t hog all the fun. The paternal side of every family needs some love time and again.

Here are the 10 best dads in gaming history, so you can pick up cues on how to be great fathers. In case you’re planning to be one, or became one by accident. Also there are some spoilers for old games below, so here’s your warning:

 

#10: Hades – Hades series

If there’s one kind of father who can make tougher beings out of their offsprings, it’s the ones who offer tough love. None of this is more apparent than in Hades, the lord of the Underworld and Zagreus’ dad in the hit roguelite action series Hades. He rules the Underworld, and makes sure no one gets out, including his own son Zagreus. Of course, if the latter beats his dad in a fair fight after going through the Underworld’s security, he bows out. Over time, dear old dad eventually respects his son.

He also helps out his daughter in the sequel Hades 2, but we won’t say more than that since the game is pretty fresh off the boat this year.

#9: Corvo Attano – Dishonored series

One of the biggest plot revelations in Arkane’s Dishonored games is the main character Corvo: he’s the father of the kidnapped princess Emily Kaldwin. And as you can tell from Dishonored 2, the grown-up Emily takes up after her dad in terms of assassination skills and magic powers. The fact that Emily talks fondly about her dad proves that father knows best, even if the whole world is against him.

#8: Joel Miller – The Last of Us series

From his life until his death, Joel has been a great father to not only his actual daughter Sarah, but also to his adopted one Ellie. After losing his only daughter, he eventually saw a lot of her in Ellie, and the two eventually bond and got really close.

If you went to great world-ending lengths just to save one life, and it’s your own daughter, that’s probably a good sign that he’s a dedicated father. Of course, his actions led to consequences most dire in The Last of Us Part 2, but let’s focus on the good side of all this: he did teach Ellie how to play the guitar (a Pearl Jam song to boot), how to fire guns, and even surprise her with a visit to a museum that’s still intact.

#7: Lee Everett – The Walking Dead (Telltale Games) series

A former teacher who escaped jail, he ended up joining a bunch of survivors in a zombie apocalypse and eventually became an orphan’s father figure: Clementine. Throughout the first Walking Dead Telltale game entry, he taught her how to protect herself and survive up until the end of his life. And he went out with a bang: saving Clementine from a stranger and sacrificing himself for the greater good.

#6: Dojima, Sojiro Sakura – Persona 4 & Persona 5

Different entries in the same JRPG series, but the same archetype: single fathers with daughters to take care of, with their lives changed by a random kid they end up housing.

Both Dojima (Persona 4) and Sojiro (Persona 5) try to be good fathers to their daughters and their surrogate son (the main characters). Eventually, the fathers accept the whirlwind that is the protagonist’s life and the friends he meets along the way doing Scooby Gang-like supernatural capers, protecting them and the world from these threats. Both dads support their respective offspring and protags in many ways, making them memorable side characters.

That said, Persona 5’s Sojiro gets the leg-up against Dojima because he makes mean coffee brews.

#5: Barret Wallace – Final Fantasy VII & its remakes

While the original Final Fantasy VII back in the 90s portrayed Barret as a stereotype, that isn’t the case with the recent Remake and Rebirth entries of the beloved JRPG franchise. The Final Fantasy VII Remakes and Rebirth games help add more depth and context to Barret, making him the best father any little girl would have, from his moments with Marlene to his party interactions with Cloud and company.

Heck, there’s even one sidequest involving a dog escort mission where Barret wonders if he’s a good enough father, when he’s not in-between gunning down fantasy monsters. Among all the FFVII Remake/Rebirth characters, Barret’s character arc in both games receives the best upgrade.

#4: Kazuma Kiryu – Yakuza/Like A Dragon series

Kazuma Kiryu is the most iconic protagonist Sega has made since Sonic The Hedgehog. Not only is he damn good at beating the crap out of bad guys -despite being part of a yakuza group back in the day- but he is also a damn great father figure to his “daughter” Haruka. After her mother’s death, Kiryu just ends up taking care of her and raising her as his own.

Throughout the Yakuza series, he not only took care of Haruka, but even started up a Sunflower Orphanage to take care of other kids. He even went so far as to go back to his former life of crime and yakuza associations to continue protecting his “family”.

This is also a good opportunity to tell you to play all the Yakuza/Like A Dragon games from parts 1 to 8 so that you understand how much hell Kiryu had to go through to put Haruka in a good place, free from his criminal associations.

#3: Geralt of Rivia – Witcher videogame series

The badass monster hunter of The Witcher series of games is quite a softie, especially around his adopted daughter Ciri.

He takes care of Ciri way better than her birth dad Emhyr. His whole plot point in Witcher 3 revolves around finding Ciri. Both Vesemir and Yennefer, key figures in Geralt’s life, would not bond so well together were it not for Ciri being around. Whether she stays with him or leaves to find her calling is proof that Geralt raised her right from start to finish.

And the less we talk about the Netflix adaptation, the better.

#2: Kratos – God of War Series

Kratos was a dad in the first God of War (for PlayStation 2) whose family died in a tragedy, thus becoming a god-killing psychopath. After all that, Kratos mellows down and becomes a more humbled person -albeit still grumpy- in the 2018 reboot/sequel, where he has his son Atreus tag along for a journey through the mythical Norse lands they’re in.

Both versions of Kratos had kids. The Greek version died, but he learns from his many, MANY mistakes and opts to forge a better path throughout the end. Kratos becomes a great dad thanks to Atreus and his way of thinking. Both help each other out to become better people.

#1:Bowser – Mario Series

Mario’s chief adversary is surprising a great father figure. At least to his spawn Bowser Jr.

He takes care of Bowser Jr. really well, even going as far as to kidnap Princess Peach to have her as a surrogate mother for his child. He gets his kid a castle of his own, even his own vehicle, and in return Bowser Jr. becomes super-dedicated to his dad. The past few Nintendo ads involving parent and child supervision when playing games even feature the both of them!

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