With the third heir to the British throne being born, VGR has decided to take a look back at some of the monarchs that have graced us with their presence in the video game kingdom. Some may not be quite as regal as others, but they certainly go about their royal duties in a more kickass way than the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Marle is a prime example as to why monarchies don’t work. After travelling back in time in Chrono Trigger, she is mistaken for her descendant Queen Leene and Chrono has to rescue Marle and the entire monarchy from their farcical ineptitude, something which is replicated hundreds of years in the future with Marle and her father.
What Marle lacks in smarts, she makes up for with bountiful enthusiasm and a crossbow. Forget the royal guard, Marle is able to hold her ground across eras and ends up marrying Chrono in one ending of the game. A genuinely strong female character is hard to come by (just look at others on this list) so Marle is a breath of fresh air as her character develops over the course of the game. Her need for adventuring, death-defying and generally causing paradoxes may not make her the greatest heir to the Kingdom of Guardia though, it has to be said.
Princess Zelda is without a doubt one of the worst monarchs real or fictional to ever have a semblance of control over a population. She routinely lets evil men enter the Hyrule grounds, she employs several royal guards who are eluded by figuring out their walking patterns and she has a penchant for being kidnapped and having dual identities. In fact, Twilight Princess is the only time we really ever see Zelda have any consideration for her people and even then she failed miserably.
The King of Hyrule is rarely seen in the Zelda games so it is up to Zelda to take the mantle and, to give her the benefit of the doubt, she has been instrumental in some of Link’s victories over Ganondorf (no matter how inadvertent). She may stick her nose where it’s not needed but- in the end- she defends her kingdom in her own unique way. She looks great in a hood too.
The King of Figaro is proof you can be chic and geek. The guy is the prettiest of pretty boys with his cool blue eyes, long blond hair done up in a ponytail complete with ribbons, and his ensemble consisting of light blue armor, white boots, and a long blue cape. Hell, you might even think he has more in common with the spoony bard Prince of Damcyan, Edward, than with chain-smoking, airship loving Cid Highwind. He loves the ladies and the ladies love him.
The guy is conflicted though. His father was poisoned, murdered by the Gestahlian Empire. His twin bro wanted to run away, but he just couldn’t shirk his duties as King of Figaro. He cut a deal with Empire to save his people. It all works out in the end.
Yes, when Edgar isn’t making backdoor deals with the Man, leading a revolution against the Man, or sending his twin brother away to be a total martial arts badass, he’s building unusual weapons. Just another day in the life of a master engineer who also just happens to be a king in Final Fantasy.
Prince of Persia
What’s better than a prince who plays polo? A prince who can reverse time, that’s what. The Prince of Persia may have had his inner conflicts to deal with but he has no time to wait around being diplomatic. He is all-action and he gets things done with a certain grace that one can’t get from attending elocution classes. How much better would wars be if the Queen stood at the enemy’s gates backflipping with a cutlass in hand? The Prince is made to seem even cooler by the fact the movie based on the game should have been condemned to the Tower of London upon release.
If the royal baby grows up to become even a fraction as cool as everyone’s favourite all-singing, all-dancing, sometimes time-manipulating Prince then the British monarchy might just become relevant again. Maybe.
Chrom might not have as many Fire Emblem appearances under his belt and he has yet to have been invited into a Super Smash Brothers roster, but he is in one of 2013’s finest games, Fire Emblem: Awakening.
If there is any video game kingdom to live in, Ylisse has to be at the top of the list. Sure, it’s always mired in the midst of war with the neighbors, but they’ve got a heroic, fight for justice royal family that will make anyone proud. Chrom is a prince, who takes over as Exalt (not just a mere King) and is the descendant of THE Hero-King Marth. As if his resume isn’t lengthy enough, he is also the captain of the Shepherds. Don’t let the name fool you. They’re a formidable vigilante force protecting the Halidom of Ylisse. He’s also the wielder of a legendary sword and shield. These other royals don’t even come close to that kind of swag.
The guy spends most of his adult life on the front line, fighting in wars to protect his family and country and finds time to get married and have children, some of which come back in time to fight with and protect him. Look up hero in the dictionary and you’ll find a picture of Chrom.
Zelda’s antics may leave her kingdom in danger but no one else quite misunderstands the role and importance of a monarch quite as much as the perpetual kidnap victim Princess Peach. Firstly, her father seems to be absent most of the time (he’s probably too embarrassed by his daughter to show his face around the royal palace) and most importantly she seems to actively want to be kidnapped by Bowser, Fawful or any other wrongdoer that comes within distance of the Mushroom Kingdom. She takes gallantry to a whole new level by allowing the destruction of the Mushroom Kingdom and the fracturing of its monarchy on several occasions. You have to wonder why her family haven’t usurped the throne after the amount of times she has thrown her subjects into peril.
Being an actual control of Princess Peach isn’t too much better. She wields an interesting floating jump but her attacks (especially in Super Mario Bros 2) aren’t anywhere near as powerful as her male (and Toad) counterparts. She constantly feels like the third wheel wherever she goes and she’s terrible at board games too. French monarch Marie Antionette once said “let them have their cake” but Peach refuses to give up her ‘cake’ to Mario. The tease…
How many kings do you know that can stealthily appear anywhere with a Whopper in hand? Snake doesn’t do that. Ezio doesn’t do that. Corvo Attano doesn’t do that. It isn’t enough for Burger King to be a king, but the guy is a ninja, just in a crown and robe and a creepy smile.
The man is the ruler of a burger empire and yet he’s probably the most Average Joe king you’ll ever meet too. He rides PocketBikes and drives bumper cars for fun. He sneaks around giving people free food. Okay, he may not be the king of games, but you’ve got to give him credit for trying. He’s a marketing genius and would win my vote, even though kings aren’t elected. The guy pops up in the most awkward of places willing to share his flame grilled quarter pound beef patty goodness. He’s never too proud to serve his people. You don’t see any of the royalty on this list doing that do you?
You’ll never have to worry about this guy being kidnapped. He can sneak out of a hostage situation. He might even bring lunch to that party. Now if only he could sneak me up a triple Whopper with cheese, hold the tomato.