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The SmashBoards Video Game Character Of The Year Awards

Champion of Hyrule

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Before the Game Awards was the (slightly less professional) Spike Video Game Awards and they've always had a category for the best character in a video game that year. Not the best performance of a character, the best character in general of a year. Since that category isn't really a thing anymore I thought it would be fun to bring that back here in SmashBoards! Partly inspired by creation threads, users will have an opportunity to submit characters who they think should take the title of Video Game Character of the Year. We will then vote on nominees to see who gets into the finals and then do another round of voting from there.

A character you nominate doesn't have to originate from a video game that came out this year or even video games in general as long as they had a role in video games this year at all. So if you would want to submit Venom, as an example, he would be eligible. A character should have been influential, popular, or just revlevant or notable in any way. I'm also going to limit it to characters with a human intelligence level or similar since if this is successful I'm planning on also having a category for the best animal in a game. You are allowed to nominate up to three characters for a spot. So if you're ready submit a character for this thread and just a brief description as to why they should get this title as you can plead their case more later in voting. That's about all the rules so feel free to start now, I hope to have a winner by the end of the year.
 

Champion of Hyrule

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Singing Trotting Piranha Plants(Super Mario Bros Wonder)
Peppino Spagetthi(Pizza Tower)
Ganondorf(Tears of the Kingdom)
I don’t think I can accept the piranha plants since they don’t really fit the category of having human like intelligence I could accept something like the talking flowers though
 

Janx_uwu

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Springtrap (Five Nights At Freddy's)
springtrapped.jpg

The primary antagonist of the hugely popular FNAF movie.

Amy Rose (Sonic The Hedgehog)
plus_amy.png

Amy's seen a really strong resurgence this year across several different titles - even being retroactively added to the Classic Sonic games.
 
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Champion of Hyrule

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We aren’t going to vote quite yet but I will begin a discussion period. Here are all the submitted characters:
For now just discuss how you think about each nominee (you don’t have to do literally all of them just the ones that interest you) and make your case for any particular character.
  1. A can B C’n with the rest of the nominees
  2. Amy has a sweet passion
  3. Chai will provide the award show’s music (no conflict of interest was determined)
  4. Ganondorf has an army assembled
  5. Joryu reminds me of someone…
  6. Kraven is on a trophy hunt
  7. Leon is going to bingo after this
  8. Luke is threatening to change his hair if he doesn’t win
  9. The Noise can’t be avoided
  10. Peppino will run, dive, or maybe roll, to get his award
  11. Reptile reluctantly geck-goes to the awards ceremony
  12. Solace is around here… In a closet somewhere
  13. Spider-Man will swing and might win
  14. Springtrap Locks a spot in the nominees
  15. Talking Flower has already tasted everything on the award banquet table
  16. Timerra is engaged to the idea of winning
  17. Yunaka is trained to kill
 

CapitaineCrash

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I haven't played that many new releases this year actually, but based on what I've played some quik thoughts:
-Leon: I mean, it's Leon freaking Kennedy, you can't hate the guy. I'm not even a huge Re4 fans (I personally think that the franchise went downhill when it started doing more action games), but the character is still awesome
-Timerra and Yunaka: I think Yunaka is just very annoying. Timerra I think was fairly cool, but she's far from being the peak of the franchise (let alone from Engage).
 

Champion of Hyrule

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Some of my thoughts:
  • I think Amy is a pretty solid pick, although for a Sonic character I might prefer Fang but that's probably just me being biased. Still though I just personally think sonic superstars and whatever sonic origins game didn't make quite enough of a splash to justify her getting in IMO
  • The fight against Ganondorf was easily my favorite part of Tears of the Kingdom and his design is very memorable so in terms of TOTK characters I think he's a pretty perfect choice
  • I wouldn't be opposed to Joryu getting further but I do feel like while LAD Gaiden explored his emotional state really deeply it mostly felt like a "stepping stone" to Infinite Wealth and the emotional arc he'd go on there so I think it might be better to start considering him next year
  • I chose Leon since I felt like there was an absolutely huge amount of fanart/fan content that came out around the time of RE Remake plus yeah he's Leon
  • I also chose Luke because the way Aleks Le basically singlehandedly changed his image is really interesting to me
  • Either Peppino or The Noise are probably the strongest picks IMO, maybe it's just bias but their personalities really shined through in their animations in Pizza Tower and are a really memorable part of the game. Getting tons of fanart doesn't hurt
  • I found Springtrap/William Afton to be a really weak part of the FNAF movie and he didn't really get that much focus anyway so I don't personally think he would be the best choice
 

Qwerty UIOP

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I've only played/seen 2 of the things that the characters from this list come from, so I'll give my 2 cents about them.
  • The Noise was one of the fun bosses that were in Pizza Tower and Peppino was a fun character to play as
  • The Talking Flowers had decent dialouge but got annoying when you kept dying during a certain stage(Lookin' at you, Jet Run Segment of Final Badge Test)
 

Janx_uwu

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While I do love Springtrap in the movie I mostly picked him cause I wanted a movie character in somehow

Amy coming back was a huge deal for Sonic fans but it definitely was more like a drop in the pan with the gaming world at large. Plus Origins Plus was kinda scummy (making you pay to play as Knuckles in CD).

I'll probably vote for Luke cause I was about to submit him before he got ninja'd, he kinda represents both the way that SF has pushed forward and also how great the fan communication has been (except for the insane microtransactions)

If talking flower won that would be really funny

I think Chai is kinda boring personally, as a representative of a larger push for indie games I think he's a fantastic choice, but Chai himself is just a standard anime protagonist and he's not nearly as beloved as the game or world he comes from.

I don't know enough about Reptile, was he big in the MK1 story or something? I probably would've voted for Omni-Man if he was submitted honestly.
 

DragonRobotKing26

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I don't watched FNAF movie,but Springtrap is a great pick,he's a most iconic indie game villain

Talking Flower is a funny pick,i could vote it

Reptile who is my submission is okay,internet is always talking about Johnny Cage and he's one of those characters from "literally me",i just chosed Reptile because i wanted a Mortal Kombat in this Character of The Year Awards and for change of popular character as Scorpion,Mileena and others

Peppino Spaghetti and The Noise,they're a great pick,Smashboards also talked about Pizza Tower,all thanks to FazDude

Leon is my biggest pick,RE4 original is a excelent game,and RE4 remake is more excelent,Leon is a Resident Evil character who i like more

🎶Spider-Man,Spider-Man,i will be vote because i'm his fan🎶,but which Spider-Man is on this Character of The Year Awards?,Peter or Miles?

Amy is very good,that's allright of having a Sonic character on this award,i could vote her
 

nirvanafan

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Forgot Future Redeemed came out this year,is on my backlog so cant say much about A.

Ganondorf & Reptile are solid picks, really enjoy their re-designs

Happy another Engage character made it, Timerra is a good choice although surprising. I liked her but remember seeing she wasnt placing very high on some popularity polls from the game. Sommie would have been a good choice too.

Chai is great too, Hi Fi Rush was very good, although personally i may have went with Corsica, CNMN, or 808.

I like Luke & Joryu too.
 

darkvortex

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gonna give my thoughts. only really doing those I know
These aren't done in any sort of real order

  • Talking Flower - Fun side characters. They're cute and I think the addition of a more talkative character to the more traditional Mario formula is a really fun one. They do have a habit of getting pretty annoying in certain levels, and I wouldn't say that they're the most rich "characters" but they're fun.
  • Ganondorf - The Tears of Kingdom version of Ganondorf is a really cool reinvention of the character. His boss fight is such a cool moment and his design is great. It would not shock me if he becomes the default version of the character going forward in smash and such. He's cool.
  • Joryu - I mean. It's just Kiryu, right? He continues to be cool as hell, but he's kind of the same character he's been for some now now. He does get some more character building in LAD Gaiden, but as COH said, it does very much feel like just a stepping stone towards Infinite Wealth.
  • Amy - it has been pretty cool to see Amy get more to do this year. After the disappointment from fandom about her not being in Maina, it really feels like they've taken that on board and are retroactively adding her to the classic lineup. I don't know if I really count her a character from "this year" but I do really like what they've done with her.
  • Chai - High Fi Rush took everyone by surprise. Chai is a fun main character, but i's say he's arguably the least interesting member of the games main cast. He's very much "main character man" and I think mostly exists to complement the rest of the cast, he is funny though.
  • Spider-Man \ Kraven - Lumping characters from the same franchise together. I'm gonna do Kraven first. I do think he's a pretty cool take on the character, I think giving him cancer and making his motivation that he finds to be killed in combat by a wothy foe is a really cool take on it, and I think the voice performance is really good. Personally I've never been a huge fan of the new villain kills previous games villains to show how powerful and cool they are trope, and this game does it multiple times with Kraven, but he's still very cool. He does kind of feel like less of a threat considering he gets killed by venom and then disappears from the story though. As for Spider-Man. It all depends which one. there are two Spider-Men in the game. Personally I think Miles is pretty cool here, but is mostly just continuing his sorry and character from his own game. Peter does get more here. I like the arc they've set up with the symbiote, even if it's not my favourite take on the story.
  • Leon - I mean. It 's Leon S Kennedy, he's great for the same reasons he's always been great. I don't think the remake adds much more to his character that wasn't already there, but he's as great as he always is.
  • Luke - I genuinely think Luke is a real darkhose pick for this. The character design and voice performance took what was considered a pretty lame design in SFV and turned him into possibly the new face of the franchise, in a way previous non Ryu protagonists have kind of failed to do (sorry Alex. Sorry Abel.). He's actually a really fun character.
  • Clive - Clive has kind of a simular issue to Chai where he's very much "main protagonist" , but I do think the more story based nature of FF16 means we have a bit more to work with here. Personally, FF16's story ended up disappointing me for a number of reasons, but Clive wasn't one of them, I found him to be a pretty cool and interesting main character, and I think a large part of that is how good Ben Starr's voice performance is. I don't know if he'll rank among the best FF protagonists, but he's pretty damn cool.
  • Pinocchio - Okay so I'll be honest I submitted him because I thought it would be funny if the actual literary character Pinocchio won this. Also I think it's funny how much he looks like Timothée Chalamet. I have admittedly only played the demos of Life of P, I do actually think their version of Pinocchio has a cool design and interesting promise and set up behind him. I do hope to actually play the full game soon and find out more.
  • Reptile - I actually do get this. Reptile was always a character where people had different ideas on what they wanted out of him. should be be more of a monster, more human, etc. MK1 actually succeeds in trying to please all those camps. They made him into a really interesting and sympathetic character. I do think Mk1 has a few opinions we could have gone for. Liu Kang, Baraka, Kenshi, Johnny Cage. He's cool.
  • The Noise \ Peppino - Pizza Tower is one of, if not the, break out indie games of 2023. I think both of those guys are perfectly vaild pick. Peppino is the more safe pick but not a bad one. He's a really well designed character with a fun personality and feels like this year's break out indie character in the vain of Shovel Knight, Sans, Cuphead, etc. I think he's a good pick. The Noise is also really fun, he's got a fun boss fight and a really fun design, even if he's just riffing on a pre existing character.
  • Shadowheart - I thought a Balders Gate character made sense for this considering how popular the game has been. It came down to Astarion or Shadowheart and I think the large amont of cosplay and fanart of her I've seen of her just put her over the elf rouge. I haven't played as much of the game as i'd like as of present, but I do think she's a fun, interesting and complex character. I think a party member who is balancing her own darkness, both figurative and literal is a really cool idea.Plus she's really cute.
  • Springtrap - He always comes back. I'm not a FNAF guy, like, at all. I watched the movie and thought he was fine. Matthew Lillard 's performance was really good but I didn't think he character was stand out from the other villains in any real way. Maybe there's more in the games but that's not what were judging here. I think as a like, monster he's kinda threatening, but I don't know if I'd put him on a list like this.
I haven't played the Xenoblade DLC and I've only played the first few hours of Engage so I do not have much to say about those picks, sorry.
 

Champion of Hyrule

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Alright, here are our options for the Video Game Character Of The Year Award:

So please vote for the five characters you want the most in order. 1st is worth 5 points, 2nd is worth 4 points, etc. I know we had a whole part for discussion but if you want to explain your choices as you vote for them, by all means do that too.

A (Xenoblade Chronicles)
Amy (Sonic)
Chai (Hi-Fi Rush)
Clive (Final Fantasy)
Ganondorf (Zelda)
Joryu (Like A Dragon)
Kraven (Spider-Man)
Leon Kennedy (Resident Evil)
Luke (Street Fighter)
The Noise (Pizza Tower)
Peppino (Pizza Tower)
Pinocchio (Lies of P)
Reptile (Mortal Kombat)
Shadowheart (Baldur’s Gate)
Solace (Bomb Rush Cyberfunk)
Spider-Man
Springtrap
(Five Nights At Freddy’s)
Talking Flower (Super Mario)
Timerra (Fire Emblem)
Yunaka (Fire Emblem)
 
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Dan Quixote

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1. Peppino
2. Spider-Man
3. Talking Flower
4. Shadowheart
5. Ganondorf

agh just realized I should totally have submitted TotK Princess Zelda while nominations were open, that'd be my #1.
 

Champion of Hyrule

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My votes:
1. Ganondorf
2. Leon
3. Luke
4. Amy
5. Shadowheart

Alright, here are the results of our voting...

At third place it's...
Luke from Street Fighter 6!

At 15 points, Luke takes the third spot! He just beats out Spider-Man who had 14 votes. Good job Luke, not bad considering his initial reputation when he first came to Street Fighter V a while ago.
Second...
At 18 appearences, it's Peppino Spaghetti from Pizza Tower.

His game might not have won at the Game Awards but he almost got a spot here!

And here's our big winner!
The Great King of Evil himself, Ganondorf wins with 23 votes!

A cool design, samurai sword and a lot of muscles certainly goes a long way in revitalizing a 25 year old character.

Results:
A (0)
Amy (4)
Chai (9)
Clive (9)
Ganondorf (23)
Joryu (2)
Kraven (0)
Leon Kennedy (7)
Luke (15)
The Noise (3)
Peppino (18)
Pinocchio (0)
Reptile (5)
Shadowheart (3)
Solace (3)
Spider-Man (14)
Springtrap (2)
Talking Flower (10)
Timerra (0)
Yunaka (4)

Thanks everyone for participating in this thread! If you want to discuss the winner please use spoiler tags for the next few days.
 
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