True love transcends all boundaries. Or something like that. Well, with the influence of St Valentine in abundance it seems like the perfect time to examine some of video gaming’s greatest pairings and see just how far couples are willing to go, how they’ll push themselves to the limit, all in the name of the one they love.
Trip & Monkey – (Enslaved: Odyssey To The West)
All’s fair in love and war, so the subtle romance that blossoms between Trip and Monkey is a nice change from pre-established relationships. It was an unexpected journey that brought these two together and showed them what truly mattered.
Forced to aid her due to a reprogramed slave headband, Monkey reluctantly agrees to help Trip return home. If anything was to happen to her or if Monkey strays too far, then the headband would kill him. Regardless of this rocky foundation, their relationship fosters as they aid each other through the wasteland.
When Trip apologises for breaking their deal and turns the headband off, Monkey tells her to switch it back on, proving that he would die to protect her. Awww
Shuyin & Lenne – (Final Fantasy X-2)
Final Fantasy X-2 has gained notoriety for being one of the worst entries in the series, but regardless of how you felt about the shift in tone, you cannot deny that Lenne and Shuyin’s story is a tragic escapade that deserves its place in this list.
You gave everything to save her, but a rain of bullets descends upon you. Despite your best intentions you failed, her last words went unheard as death claimed you. How could you accept a fate like that. Well, Shuyin couldn’t! These untended emotions became so powerful that they transcended death, influencing others and allowing him to manipulate their thoughts and actions.
“This world continues to fail us, and what’s worse, I failed to protect you. Vegnagun will make that all go away.”
Shuyin’s self-loathing remains at the forefront of his actions, this constant reminder of his failure resulting in his endeavours to destroy the world. It’s a depressing allegory about the loss Yuna has suffered and how far she will go to bring Tidus back.
Christof & Anezka – (Vampire The Masquerade: Redemption)
Love burns eternal, and what better example is there than Christof Romuald’s millennium-long courtship of Anezka. Time wasn’t the only tribulation the couple would suffer, considering that Christof is embraced (turned into a vampire) in preparation for an upcoming war.
Shockingly Anezka also fought for her love, abandoning her post as a nun, attempting to find a way to restore the crusaders lost humanity. From Prague to New York over the course of 1000 years, things were certain to change, but Christof’s resolve never faltered and he freed Anezka from her dependence on vampiric blood.
Despite the hurdles the pair faced, Christof retained his humanity and the couple rejoiced their love, before he turned her to a ‘World of Darkness’
Vincent & Katherine/Catherine – (Catherine)
It’s tough to give credit to hapless hero Vincent for being faith in a relationship, particularly when you consider the branching endings the game offers. Yet regardless of the choice between Catherine or Katherine, Vincent endures a hardship stranger than most whilst forging his future.
With his life in turmoil, nothing is more appealing for slacker Vincent than a good night’s rest. Yet with each consecutive day, a labyrinth of complex block related puzzles lies before him, with the safety net below continuously shrinking. To top off, the nightmare ends with a Vincent being frantically chased by boss inspired by his fears.
“Child with chainsaw has appeared, it’s the killer, do not die!”
After a week of these hellish nightmares Vincent has ascertained his goals, whist results in the love of either Catherine or Katherine.
Nero & Kyrie – (Devil May Cry 4)
Praising a Devil May Cry game for developing a strong relationship between characters? Especially considering Dante’s penchant for exchanging blows with the lady-folk in his life, but the relationship Capcom established between Nero and Kyrie is something different.
‘From that day forth… my arm changed… and a voice echoed “Power! Give me more power!” and if I become a demon, so be it… I’ll endure the exile… anything… to protect her!’
Like numerous video game protagonists, Nero will fight hordes of enemies and traverse endless horizons to rescue his ‘damsel in distress’. What makes Nero so unique is that he’s flawed, when Toad tells Mario his princess is in another castle, the plucky plumber picks himself up and continues his journey. However with each hardship Nero endures his strength falters, resulting in outbursts of anger and depression.
We’ve done a lot for our respective heroes love interest throughout the evolution of gaming, perhaps I missed one of your most iconic adventures. Who else deserves recognition for doing anything in the name of love? Let us know in the comments below. Happy Valentine’s Day!