With the possibility of Suikoden II being released on the PSN, I will finally get to know all the joys of one much-talked about JRPG. As per my motto, I'm still lowering my expectations so as to not be disappointed even though I've heard only great things about its amazeballs, complex story and the characters who carry the narrative with class. But you know what I want to know most about Suikoden II? Yes, yes: the music, the adventure and the villains but more so, I am wondering if there's any white or silver-haired character for me to swoon over. These are the important things that matter most. Who disagrees?
Certainly not my JRPGs and other Japanese created games.
It should be no surprise that the silver-haired/white-haired (and other unnatural hair colours!) characters in JRPGs, other games and anime are a thing to help characters stand out more. All I know is that I usually love the silver/white-haired characters more often than not, have a sort of misguided respect for them, or just enjoy their characterizations at times. I love that many of the ones I have encountered are presented with bad-attitudes, twisted ideals and tortured pasts. That's not always true of all of them, especially when characters with regular or other coloured hair are also capable of displaying these traits. But the white-haired/silver-haired ones often catch my attention faster.
Today, in this edition of The Fun List, I'm just going to give a little shout-out (in no particular order) to a handful of my favourite characters in video games with some serious hair issues: that's to say they really should, in theory, stop bleaching. Aging at 18. Or you know, whatever it is they did to get that white/silver glean. But mostly, my picks are the ones who have come to represent a sort of edgy personality trait, are villains or are just damned powerful.
1. Shinobu, No More Heroes series
Did anyone give this girl her own NMH spin-off yet? I mean a fully-fleshed out game and not just a slightly expanded role as she had in NMH 2: Desperate Struggle? Did I miss it or are we still hopeful this will be a thing? I'll certainly miss Travis. But how bad-assed would it be to have a main female character who is a katana-wielding assassin playing an entirely different dynamic from the Otaku? Well, the game would be completely different in tone, I think; and we'd need to get those romantic interests she has in Travis cleared away because goodness knows she's entirely interesting on her own without being weighed down by emotional hang ups.
On a scale of one to awesome, NMH's Shinobu ranks awesome on the UAA. Her flair - from her keen sense of grace from her hairstyle to her dress code - that reads "I'm Deadly" in how she carries herself? Scary but also scary fantastic.
2. Sephiroth, Final Fantasy VII and beyond
Oh come now. You did not honestly think I would have a list without Sephiroth in it, did you? JENOVA issues aside, who can deny that was one stylish MOFO (no relation to HOJO...kinda). When you are as amazing a SOLDIER as Sephiroth was, who cares about protection of your upper body?! (Oh, Sephy - your arrogance really did you dirty there at the Nibelheim Mako reactor, didn't it?) No, the things to consider are just how much flow you could get in a long, black coat when casting Meteor. And of course, to complement that would be to take into consideration how lustrous the hair would swirl around when you strut. As I said, it's the important fashionista things in life that matter. And if you're going to go to keep antagonizing the world because you have no place in the Life Stream, better make sure you do so with fabulosity.
Another question we could ask: which version of Sephiroth is truly the most fabulous?
3. Keita, Yamato and a Mystery Man; Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2
Forty-four hours later, I have finished my first play through of this. It's a pretty fantastic game: chock full of people on the side of extreme viewpoints on how the world should be, demons trying to steal my life...you know, full of all the Atlus inspired themes common to their games. Here, Atlus went even further - they threw three characters with white/silver hair in! One with hair as white as freshly fallen snow and two with hair as silver as old. Uh. Precious metal. I meant precious metal.
Well, I did not swoon so much over Keita. Keita was just a jerkface all around. He reminded me of my character in Kenka Bancho - tough guy student with nothing better to do than look out for himself on the mean streets.
He probably picked up ninjutsu from the streets too a la Joe Armstrong. Whoops. Wrong reference.
Then there was Yamato. I love him for his intense ideals. I honestly felt sad when I made my character go against his wishes because I had so enjoyed building up a strong friendship with him. Being a 'yes man' was an easy job and while I did not necessarily agree with his brand of crazy, I did enjoy the terrible smirks of approval he would give my character. I liked his no nonsense authority. I liked that sharp, little tooth that stuck out in disgust when he took to yelling at everyone's stupidity. I also enjoyed his blatant display of how he thought everyone useless. Mostly due to the fact that none of that was not directed towards my character.
As for the Mystery Man, his struggling to understand my jokes was rather endearing. He, like Yamato, also had a no nonsense sort of attitude but in a different way. Plus when he entered and exited a room, he certainly did so with an air of weirdness. His blank slate sort of personality made for some funny moments, even if unintentional. His hair also looked unkempt. But so did mine. And not nearly as cool since my character's hair was black and not white. It was pure jealousy the whole time he came on that screen.
4. Magus, Chrono Trigger
I would of course, be remiss to not mention Magus. Hm? You say his hair is more a blue? And that the moonlight reflecting on him is not actually a hair colour? LIES. I will give you that sometimes it is blueish-silver, but the sometimes Toriyama art told me white. Agree, stop questioning my potential colour-blinded nature and focus! And let us get to the more important aspects: That M shaped hairline. It is one that started out strong and then his hair fanned out into wonder. That smug bastard attitude. The finesse he displayed when summoning Dark Matter. I feel faint! Someone get me some smelling salts!
Magus also wore tight leather pants, looked like a vampire, carried a scythe, and cloaked himself in red. Capes are dangerous if there's anything that Pixar's The Incredibles taught us, but here, I accepted it. It went well with his hair. And he also had cohorts going by the name of Slash, Flea and Ozzie? What sort of Rock God Fiendlord of the Mystics was this man?! A fantabulous one, is what.
It wasn't all bad with Magus, though. He was concerned about his sister! He certainly had some outstanding dedication.
4. Ghirahim, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
Hrrm. You seem awfully familiar. You kinda look like you're channeling Final Fantasy VI's Kefka while pretending to be Magus. I am thoroughly confused. Part Clown. Part lizard with that tongue; I just don't know what to think about you. You're creepy but you certainly are unique. The way you snap those fingers all fierce like and disappear in a series of diamonds is the definition of the high life. What's more beautiful than diamonds? Nothing. That's what. It's all classy with you even if you may be influenced from some of the best characters that came before you. Or maybe they ripped their style from you? All those time travel mechanics and weird Legend of Zelda time lines have me a bit confused but whatever the case may be, you've managed to make it your own and be absolutely horrible in nature while you're at it.
You are a true villain! Successfully taunting Link and his sometimes frustrating Wii controlled sword in a sword fight. That wasn't playing dirty; that was utilizing your enemy's weakness. None can fault you there.
BONUS: Amaterasu, Ōkami
What's more beautiful than a Goddess Wolf with that healthy white coat of
furhair? If you said diamonds, Ghirahim or Sephiroth based on my recaps on why I love them, I would not argue. But! Any wolf that brandishes a blade, takes down an Orochi multiple times (all that math including the many heads is much too staggering for me to take on at the moment), and still has the time to listen to some annoying companions barking (pun!) in your ears is indeed a saint. A saintly saint of a Goddess wolf. Looking good with multiple shields? That's no sort of challenge for you, girl.
Ridiculous Special Bonus:
So that's it. I must have forgotten quite the number of white and/or silver-haired characters. Did I really forget? Or am I waiting for you to hit up the comments below and list your favourites? Let's go with the latter!
Oh, and uh. Can anyone tell me if that guy in Suikoden II has blonde hair or need I prepare myself to do some swooning? Or alternately make excuses about moonlight?
- Visit TAY Classic for a battle with a white/silver-haired villain or three. Before all that, you might want to have discussions about life, video games or anything you want with all the mini-bosses. You can either join in a conversation or start one of your own! Just make one of your tags "tay classic" after your relevant ones. If you had any questions as to how TAY works, please give the tutorial a read.