Thursday, March 30, 2017

Top Five Video Game Doctors

Doctor, doctor. Give me the news. I got a bad case of loving you! Well, not in a romantic sense, but more in an admiration one. Today is National Doctors' Day, so it only makes sense that SuperPhillip Central somehow turn this day into an article of some kind. What better way to do this than a topic that we've yet to delve into, the most memorable video game doctors! While most of us wouldn't trust our lives with these characters, they are worthwhile all the same. If this list is missing some of your faves, let everyone know in the comments!

5) Dr. Nefarious (Ratchet & Clank series)


The comically inclined and seriously unhinged Dr. Nefarious is a robotic scientist who absolutely loathes organic lifeforms (or "squishies" as he calls them). In his first appearance in the Ratchet & Clank series, Up Your Arsenal, he vowed to turn all organic lifeforms in the Solana Galaxy into robots, and set his master plan in motion. Thankfully, the duo of Ratchet and Clank put an end to that plan before it could reach its conclusion. Dr. Nefarious has a bad temper, and has been known to break down in mid-bout of anger, then broadcasting a soap opera from his antenna, requiring his butler Lawrence to slap him back into commission. And who doesn't love Dr. Nefarious when he just lets loose and screams a shrieking "LAWRRRENCE!!" I certainly do! Nefarious is a hilarious character, whether he's facing off against his rivals or teaming up with them as seen in Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One. For the latter, he made it worth playing through that less than stellar game.

4) Dr. Neo Cortex (Crash Bandicoot series)


Dr. Neo Cortex is Crash Bandicoot's primary rival as well as being his creator. He has all the touchstones of a mad scientist: ridiculous plots for world domination, insane creations, and a general disgust for humanity and all life. Although he usually acts to serve his own ends, in Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped, it's revealed that he's being ordered around by the all powerful Uka Uka. Despite generally being confident and brave in appearance most of the time, Cortex checks his spine in and the shop and turns absolutely chicken when danger comes his way (such as having to confront Uka Uka in a scene in Warped). When he's not plotting Crash Bandicoot's demise, he's sometimes joining Crash's cause (as seen in Crash Twinsanity) or taking out his frustrations on the road in games like Crash Team Racing, Crash Nitro Kart, and Crash Tag Team Racing.

3) Dr. Mario (Mario series)


It's unknown if Mario obtained a legal medical license, but he doesn't really need one when he's kicking, punching, and smashing opponents off the screen in a match of Super Smash Bros, which he's been in three of the five releases (Melee, 3DS, and Wii U). When he's not letting off steam from a hard day at the office, he's doing miracles in the realm of medicine, fighting off viruses with a healthy dose of colorful pills. It might not be Tetris, but it's pretty close in the fun factor. Sometimes he gets his brother Luigi in on the fun and they tag team dangerous viruses together. After all, all doctors have to follow the Hippocratic Oath, even ones in the Mushroom Kingdom! Though maybe the name of the oath isn't quite the same name in Mario's world...

2) Dr. Light and Dr. Wily (Mega Man series)


I'm cheating a bit with this penultimate pick of the most memorable video game doctors, but both come from the same series and both worked together in the past. Both Dr. Thomas Light and Dr. Albert Wily were colleagues, working on furthering research in robotics. Despite Wily's own success in the field, he always had a buried jealousy towards Dr. Light. In the very first Mega Man game, Dr. Wily steals the six robots that Dr. Light created, turning them evil. Ironically, the robot that Dr. Wily didn't take due to believing he was too weak for his grand scheme, a young robot named Rock, would be weaponized by Dr. Light into Mega Man, eventually defeating Dr. Wily, a process that would repeat itself time and time again. And that didn't matter how many groups of eight Robot Masters or castles Wily created. You gotta give Dr. Wily and his wiggling eyebrows credit for persistence at the very least, as well as creativity for building Robot Masters based off of themes like mermaids, vacuums, and race cars!

1) Dr. Eggman/Robotnik (Sonic the Hedgehog series)


However, if we're talking about pure persistence, then there's no doctor of equal persistence than Dr. Eggman (originally known in the West as Dr. Robotnik). Whether he's building badniks, capturing animals and forest friends to turn into robots, creating a surplus of machinery to connect to his small travel pod to face off against his rival Sonic at the end of every zone, or whatever, Eggman never backs down. Sure, he can run with his proverbial tail between his legs after suffering a really big loss at the end of a Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Sonic game, but he always comes bouncing back eventually. Even when he's upstaged by a more powerful villain as seen in modern Sonic games (except really Sonic Colors and Lost World), Eggman still leaves his mark. I mean, we're talking about a dude that can somehow finance the construction of giant Death Star-like mechanical eggs and interstellar amusement parks. Eggman's greatness is helped by the fact that he has kept the same voice actor for over a decade now, Mike Pollock, who brings a tremendous amount of personality to the character. He's so good at his job that when the Sonic X cast was replaced by a new roster of voice actors in 2010, only Pollock was carried over. Now, it's hard to imagine Eggman being voiced and portrayed by anyone else.

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