I Love Games That Make You Emotionally Side with The Enemy

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Kyle Smith

Publish Date:

12 Jan 2021

Video games for a long time have followed a very simple formula – You are the ‘goodie’ and you have to go a defeat the ‘baddie’. Although over time and as technology has gotten better, so has our story telling techniques. Now, developers add emotion depth to their games, aiming to getting you in the ‘feels’ when something bad happens. Examples of this might be when let’s say one of your favourite characters gets impaled by a 6ft Katana… or one of your companions, full of grief and anger, drives a fuel tanker into a fuelling depot killing himself and the entire enemy force! But in this article, I am going to take another perspective on this formula and talk about enemies that you end up siding with emotionally. Those bad guys, that not ‘bad guys’. Those who walk the grey line of good and bad. So, let’s get to it and be sure to share your favourite enemies who fall into this category on our Social Media Pages.

I know, I know, this entry is a little unconventional - But I mean this primarily from her backstory in Portal 2. For those in the unknown, GLaDOS is an AI that cares for the remains of an abandoned testing lab, Aperture Science. All the way through the first game and the majority of the second game GLaDOS insults Chell (the protagonist), over and over with rude remarks and constant physical and psychological testing. You see GLaDOS originally was the wife of the owner of Aperture Science, named Caroline. As her husband passed away, he instructed that Caroline would be uploaded to an AI Chamber, so that her consciousness could be turned into AI, so that she could run Aperture after death. After being renamed to Genetic Lifeform and Operating System (GLaDOS), she became (as expected) hostile locking down the facility and filling it with a neurotoxin. After this, and as AI, GLaDOS captured these employees, and began testing each of them through Apertures active testing program for years afterwards, therefore fulfilling her code in keeping Aperture running. It’s only when you play and complete Portal 2, you find that GLaDOS has forgotten her origins, being Caroline, and begins to regain her human consciousness. She had only been doing what her programming had ordered her and had lost her humanity in the process and all of this was because her husband seemingly forced her to upload her consciousness into an AI.

The Untitled Goose game is arguably one of the most peaceful and fun little indie games that you would come across. It’s a beautiful little playground where you play as one of the biggest trouble-makers in gaming history – the Goose. As ‘the Goose’, you go around fulfilling an evil checklist of things to do which will involve: Getting a village citizens wet, Stealing an Item from the shop, locking a boy in a phone box and stealing his glasses. I mean, I don’t really need to go too much deeper into this to describe how much of a nuisance you are to that poor little community. Its basically Bully 2.

Shadow of the Colossus has you playing as Wander, a man on an adventure of redemption, where he aims to revive his lost love Mono. To do so, Wander finds an ancient shrine, in which a voice tasks him with killing 16 intimidating Colossi that roam the lands. Using the light shining from a gifted magical blade, Wander goes and hunts these monumental monsters down one by one. Problem is the Colossi are simply just creatures that protect this ancient and forgotten land, almost like Demi gods of the lands. They contain the essence of an evil spirit, in which Wander is one by one releasing back into the world. He is recklessly slaughtering each Colossi and ending its life in the interest of bringing back a single person. The worst part yet, is Wander is mindlessly doing the bidding of an ancient evil, who only wants to be revived. By the time that this is known, it is too late, and Wander is possessed by the evil spirit Dormin. All that mindless slaughter for nothing!

In Metal Gear Solid 1, the Protagonist Solid Snake is a battle hardened soldier, who is tasked with infiltrating Shadow Moses Island and bringing down the infamous secret military cell group, Fox Hound. Amongst this evil band of villains is a violent Sniper called Sniper Wolf. Sniper Wolf is a cold-hearted killer, don’t get me wrong. If you cross her path or could be used for her to achieve her objective, then she will take you down. Although its only upon further consideration that you find that she isn’t quite a cold hearted as you might think. During the events of the game ‘Wolf’ takes many actions that weigh more on the side of good, and go against her military companions. You find out that, whilst the other relentlessly wound up their key capture Hal Emmerich, Wolf cared for him and treated him with kindness. Although she did not have feelings for him, she found a friend in him and held sympathy for his situation. But also, if you consider things, when she baited Solid Snake by wounding his partner Meryl, she never actually killed her (as per the cannon story). Wolfs infatuation was against Snake, and no-one else needed to die to satisfy that. Finally, in her final moments, she admits that she was waiting to be killed by someone as skilled as Snake, and alludes to the fact she was tired of the evil actions of people like Liquid and Fox Hound.

The Geth in Mass Effect are perceived as generally bad in Mass Effect having quite violent tendencies towards the different galaxy races. Although, the Geth where actually made by the Quarians. When the Geth began to become more increasingly intelligent, the Quarians grew nervous. Do you know what they did next? The Quarians then began to try and eradicate the Geth! So, naturally the Geth defended themselves, being badged as the bad guys. Then to make things worse, the Reapers deceived the Geth turning them into an army to fight against the rest of the universe! I mean, what more can I say! I just hope that the Geth can just live among the other lives of the universe one day!

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