When starting this list I thought it was a great idea because there are loads of villains from games that are cool but when it comes down to it most are bad ass but they aren’t really cool. I could have filled this entire list with almost every boss from the metal gear solid games, Kojima knows his stuff! I tried not to pick too many from Metal Gear Solid so lets just say now that EVERY MGS villain was cool because they nearly all were.
After putting a lot of though into this it seems that most of the coolest video game villains are from games created by Japanese developers.
Vamp – Metal Gear Solid 2 & 4
Vamp is one of my favorite villains from the Metal Gear Solid series. Thanks to nano machines he can take a bullet to the head and brush it off like it was nothing. His accent is unique and is quite a charismatic character contribute a lot to him being one of the coolest video game villains of all time. He must have 1 kick ass cloak of agility because he is lightning quick in close combat. Abilities and ‘special powers’ aside vamp is undeniably cool and maybe a tad weird at times.
Young Ocelot – Metal Gear Solid 3
There is a considerable difference in the personality between young and old ocelot which is why this is specifically young ocelot. Young ocelot has quite a large ego in MGS3. He is extremely confident in his shooting abilities and overly cocky which was his downfall. His coolness was replaced with a more evil badass vibe in MGS4 which was cool but not quite as cool as ‘high school jock’ Ocelot.
Vaas Montenegro – Farcry 3
It seems weird having Vaas on the list since he is totally nuts! Vaas with his many mental issues does still come across as a really cool guy, that doesn’t mean I would like to be friends with him but you know what I mean! He is the leader of a band of pirates so he has power and confidence. The actor(s) responsible for bringing this character to life did a great job at creating 1 of the coolest lunatics I’ve ever seen in gaming. Volker is worth mentioning here but I found Vaas to be by far the cooler of the 2.
Andrew Ryan is quite a passive villain when it comes to villains since there is no direct boss fight but he is the reason shit is fucked up so it is fair to classify him as the bad guy. He isn’t the coolest looking guy in the world but he is the man responsible for creating rapture…need I say any more?
“Power-hungry, knowledgeable and infinitely cunning, he was a man who sought power and domination over the entire human race, all for his own gain.” That definitely sounds like the goals of a good old fashion villain to me. Wesker was the commander of the STARS team which makes him skilled in special ops , obviously along the way he became a dick head and went bad. He has that typical charisma that villains from Japanese games tend to have which I obviously have a fetish for since I have quite a few Japanese villains in this list.
Glados – Portal
Glados or G.L.A.D.O.S , since she (it) is a computer and not an actual person. Glados is a brilliant character and very well written. You see a huge change in its personality from the start of the game compared to the end and this is what I found to be quite cool about the character. Glados has a very dry but sharp sense humour along with a programmed need to make humans work through a series of tests. Its hard to know if glados is cool or the people who programmed it either way this character has definitely earned its place on this list.
Shao Kahn – Mortal Kombat
Mortal Kombat being a fighting game isn’t too heavily focussed on the narrative but that doesn’t mean this guy isn’t cool enough to make it to the list! Shao Kahn is built like a tank and hits like one too. The armour he wears is very distinct and it looks pretty damn cool to me. I don’t want to describe his appearance much more without coming across incredibly gay so just look at the picture and see for yourself.
When you look at Sephiroth he gives off a vibe like he’s just a bit too cool to be a villain but he sure as hell is! This guy has one crazy ass back story behind him and has almost been programmed to be the evil villain who tries to take over the world. He is a definitely ticks almost all of the boxes to fit into the coolest villain category. Sephiroth is widely considered one of the coolest villains of all time so he earns his place in this list by default but i definitely agree with this.
Zeus – God Of War
Zeus looks like a member of ZZ-Top with some godly powers. He is the king of gods! I cant think of a whole lot cooler things than someone who is a god of gods! A god of gods is a title that might make you think that this guy is a honourable guy who is all good but in God of War he is the bad guy for sure! It’s hard to talk much about this guy without giving away spoilers but he is a seriously cool character and somehow manages to find the time in his schedule being king of gods to get some killer abs!
Kain – Soul Reaver
The Legacy of Kain series is 1 of my favourite game franchises of all time. The voice acting and great script really help you get to know the character that is Kain. He is the main bad guy of the series. He is responsible for the current state of Nosgoth due to him being unwilling to sacrifice himself to save the world. I liked the character of Kain a lot simply due to the great writing of the games but on top of his personality he is the leader of the vampires and he looks like a badass, just look at that sword!
Bowser – Mario and Gannon – Zelda
After looking back at this list I realised I have neglected to mention any Nintendo characters. While Nintendo games have had some cool bosses its hard to consider them cool when putting them up against the likes of Shao Khan and Sephiroth. Nintendo characters are just a little bit too childish to be compared to other villains like this. Thats not to say these bosses aren’t cool, I am a huge fan of the Zelda series of games so i think its fair to give a mention to both Gannon and Bowser for being cool characters.