Nintendo, the billion dollar gaming giant, is well known for its successful consoles and games. The real success of Nintendo, however, is not so much in their consoles or even games, but rather in their ability to create successful characters and building franchises around them. These character franchises are what the real long term success of Nintendo is built upon. Just take a look at the number of Mario games and spin-offs and you will see what we are getting at. Players learn to identify with the characters and learn to love (or hate) them so much that the characters even reach a celebrity-like status with fan-bases, wiki-pages and memes to rival any famous person. As already mentioned, a good example of this is the all-time popular Mario. Mario has probably featured in more games and spin-offs than Jean-Claude Van Damme has starred in bad action movies, one of these of course being Street Fighter, case and point.
While Nintendo has a huge number of great characters, not every single character they come up with is gold. It is bound to happen sooner or later, with so many games, spin-offs and franchises sooner or later one will slip between the cracks. Their successful character track record is remarkable but no one is perfect, so let's dig a litter deeper and take a look at the worst Nintendo characters of all time.
25 Ludwig von Koopa
Most of the Koopalings are great little characters and, by great, we mean that they are great at being little villainous rascals. They are seven Bowser-like siblings who at first were thought to be Browser's children, but later Nintendo stated that they were in fact not. Seems like that they are so naughty that not even Bowser wants to have them as his children. All of them have quite charming characters and looks, except Ludwig von Koopa. Ludwig, said to be the oldest and self-appointed leader of the group, has a certain off-putting look to him with his one tooth and parted hair. What he lacks in form, he doesn't make up for in personality either, being a rather big show off and very proud. He thinks he is better than everyone else which leads to his downfall eventually, as things go since he underestimates Mario.
24 Scoff & Troff
Troff, along with his buddy Scoff, can be found in Donkey Kong 64. They are a couple of overweight and overly ugly characters, who love to do nothing but eat and sometimes can be encouraged into unlocking doors, with the right number of bananas that is. The two seem to have become too big for their clothes, as they are entirely naked as opposed to the other characters who at least have the decency to wear one piece of clothing, like a tie or something. Troff is by far the uglier of the two, being a big fat pink pig with a belly that could rival any Sumo wrestler's. Scoff isn't going to win any beauty contests either, being a big blue hippo, but he is somehow less irritating.
Lakitus are those turtle-like creatures which ride on clouds and are first encountered in Super Mario Bros. Now, picture a Lakitu trying to be cool while riding on an angry grey cloud, then you can get somewhat of an idea of who Lakithunder is. Lakithunder is a boss encountered in New Super Mario Bros. the two-and-a-half dimensional take of the popular game. At the time, it was the first side-scrolling version Nintendo had released in over a decade. We don't know if it is his dark shades or the dark cloud that he's riding, or the fact that he desperately tries to be cool, but he seems to be the most unlikable Lakitu of them all. So much for trying to be cool though, since he quickly loses his cool in battle and as he will attack more aggressively if he comes under attack.
22 Fake Bowser
What do you do when you are creating a game and need more bosses than you have time to create? You use the same sprite over and over and over again and just give them a new name, of course. It was a brilliant idea or someone just got lazy at Nintendo, or maybe both. Nevertheless we speculate that it is how Fake Bowser came to be. It can be quite disappointing thinking that you have finally defeated the old enemy, only to realize that it was just a little Goomba in disguise. So how do you tell which Bowser is real and which one is fake? Well, as with most precious things, you test it with fire. That’s the only way to separate the real from the fake.
Cheepskipper is a huge and rather ugly fish boss found in New Super Mario Bros. Belonging to the Cheep-Cheep species, he mostly swims around, but, at times, he jumps out of the water to attack with a few bounces on the platform as well. The player needs to wait for him to be airborne to jump on him, so time those counter-attacks well. Cheepskipper is probably the nastiest of the Cheep-Cheeps being purple, rather big and having oversized lips with two big fangs. Luckily, you won't encounter Cheepskipper too often since Nintendo was wise to use him sparingly and he only features in New Super Mario Bros Adventure and New Super Mario Heroes U. While the Cheepskipper encounter may not be pleasant, successfully defeating him rewards the player with a key to the next world.
20 The Duck Hunt Dog
Ah, Mr. Duck Hunt Dog, our old nemesis. The Duck Hunt Dog is probably the most hated Nintendo character of all time, and for good reason. Feeding off of players mistakes and laughing in their face at the worst possible time can do that. The relationship with the Duck Hunt Dog can best be described as a love-hate relationship. It is one of those characters who's extremely charming in a way, but can also invoke feelings of extreme frustration, a character that player loves to hate. The Dog has angered so many people that many have desired to shoot it instead of the ducks and that says a lot. If you want to turn the tables and be the one laughing at the Duck Hunt Dog for a change, check out our article on 15 Hilarious Nintendo Memes That Will Make You LOL.
19 Mr. Resetti
Mr. Resetti is an angry mole with two sole purposes in life: to lecture Animal Crossing players into not resetting the game and to remind them to save frequently. That’s it! If you're smart, you now understand how they came up with his name. After a player resets the game to gain an advantage, Mr. Resetti gives them a long and angry speech, hoping to persuade the player not to do it again. However, resetting the game could be tempting since it resets the internal clock of the game and could give resetting rebels an advantages with new stock. The more the player resets the game, the angrier he becomes and things quickly escalate, so much so that rumor has it Mr. Resetti made a lot of young players cry and had to be made optional.
Ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, the award for the creepiest Nintendo character goes to none other than Tingle from The Legend of Zelda. All we can say is, what were you thinking Nintendo? Tingle is a thirty-five year old man who is infatuated by forest fairies. If you're unaware of the character, we are not making this stuff up. He also likes dressing up in green, similar to Link, but unfortunately doesn't quite pull off the look the way Link does. His costume is a little bit too tight for our liking and he has a large belly that isn’t flattering. Tingle's main goal in life is to become a forest fairy and that explains his obsession with them, but it still doesn’t justify his creepiness or strange behaviour.
17 Slippy Toad
Star Fox is a rail shooter first released in 1993 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The game series features a number of animal characters like Slippy Toad, one of Fox McCloud's wingmen. Unlike Fox McCloud, Slippy Toad doesn’t have much going for him and Nintendo is probably to blame for it. They cast a female actress to do Slippy Toad's voice acting, leading players to believe that Slippy Toad was in fact female. However, Nintendo actually intended Slippy to be male, so this ended up being a little bit confusing. The result was a supposedly male character with an irritatingly high-pitched voice. On top of that, he (or she) was a bad pilot and wingman (or wingwoman) in general, needing to be frequently assisted.
Navi is a character from the The Legend of Zelda series who accompanies and helps Link with his quest in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. She is a fairy-like creature who can best be described as a jealous nagging girlfriend stalking Link, although she is obviously not actually his girlfriend. Even though Navi is supposed to help the player, the help gained is far outweighed by the irritation she causes by her repetitive shouting. She is one of the most irritating characters in the whole series, even to the point where some players wished they could kill her! Wow, it sounds like bottled-up feelings of extreme frustration are coming out there. Honestly, it just shows how men really don't like to be nagged.
15 The Wii Fit Trainer
Talk about a lack of personality. The Wii Fit Trainer hails from the Wii Fit series and obviously serves as a personal instructor in the game, that much is expected. What was not expected is that the trainer would be a playable character in some of the Super Smash Bros. games. Well, actually, it should come as no surprise as we know Nintendo is infamous for reusing its characters over and over again. They ride the wave of success of their characters as far as it will take them, but this time they went a little too far. Although it was an easy way to fill up another spot in the game, the faceless and somewhat personality-less Wii Fit Trainer is unexciting when compared to the other characters in the game.
Nintendo is no stranger when it comes to reinventing characters and it happens a bunch with the famous Super Mario Bros. characters. If Luigi lives in the shadow of his popular brother Mario, then we don’t know where that leaves Waluigi, his alter-ego and rival. Waluigi can best be described as an evil version of Luigi, who is known to be ill-tempered, mischievous and will resort to cheating if that’s what it takes to win. He is also quick to accuse other players of cheating if he loses. If that sounds familiar, it is because we all know someone like that and it is probably one of the reasons that Waluigi is so disliked. If, however, you identify with those characteristics or just enjoy trolling other players, then Waluigi is a good choice and can be found in many of the Mario sports games.
13 Tom Nook
While not as irritating as Mr. Resetti, Tom Nook is another unpleasant character from the Animal Crossing series. Tom Nook is roughly based on a Japanese raccoon dog and is as greedy as he looks sleepy, and that is quite a bit. He controls the village store and later becomes a real estate agent, amongst other things. It seems he has his fingers in many pies and if the town were a real city, then Tom Nook would probably be a money-laundering mob boss. He might seem generous at times, but only because he can make some money off of it, as he loves to keep his customers in as much debt as he can. Some critics say that they would really enjoy watching him get beat up and we tend to agree.
The Metroid game series has many obnoxious beast bosses that could have been inspired from someone's nightmares, but Kraid is one of the worst. Having three eyes, Kraid is a ginormous reptile-like boss, not even fitting on the screen in some games. He can shoot weird (biological) projectiles out of his oversized belly and from his claws too. Monsters like these are best avoided, unfortunately he is a recurring boss in the Metroid series, so you will have to face your fears if you play the series. He also features in Super Smash Bros. Melee, having a little bit of a better appearance, but still being evil and spinning the platform from time to time. He is one monster that you wouldn't want to run into in a dark alley.
11 Falco Lombardi
Falco Lombardi is a blue bird-like character, who features in every one of the Star Fox games. While not as irritating as Slippy Toad, Falco Lombardi is disliked for his own unique reasons. He is a decent pilot at least, but his attitude leaves plenty to be desired, with his ego getting in the way most of the time. That’s what pride does to you and it isn't surprising when fans call him lame and/or a douchebag. He also tries very hard to be fashionable and cool with his clothing, but somehow it doesn’t come together in the end and he probably would have been better off just going for simple attire. He is not a bad guy in the end, but he is just not very likeable.
10 Master Hand
Imagine a huge hand as big as a truck with white gloves on, similar to the gloves that Sonic the Hedgehog would wear. Now imagine that hand starts slapping you around and beating you up. It doesn't sound very nice does it? Well, that is basically who Master Hand is or at least what he does when encountered in a game. Master Hand features in all the Super Smash Bros. games and is the ultimate antagonist of the series. Not much is known about Master Hand and legend has it that he is the creator of the Super Smash Bros. universe. What we do know about him is that he likes toying with other characters and slapping them around. You've got Nintendo to thank for that.
Kracko is an extremely weird cloud-like monster with a single eye and spikes all around it, who appears in almost all of the Kirby games. Kracko's first appearance was in Kirby's Dream Land released in 1992 and some games also feature an undeveloped version of him, called Kracko Jr., who has only an eye and four spinning balls surrounding him. Although it is a little confusing, since this could be a different character altogether as he is also known to be Kracko's son. Kracko's odd name apparently is said to derive from the sound that lighting makes. He is an evil little creature with a whole arsenal of attacks including shooting lightning, rain, beams and spawning other enemies. With his odd appearance and various attacks, Kracko is one of the more unpleasant characters in the Kirby game series.
Sandbag, the character from the Super Smash Bros. series, is supposed to be a sandbag, obviously, but he more closely resembles a punching bag than a sandbag. Technicalities aside, Sandbag probably has the saddest purpose of all Nintendo characters. His sole purpose is to be beaten-up real bad and hit for a kind of home-run, while he doesn’t even fight back. He is such an innocent looking character which just makes it worse. Shame on Nintendo for not having one of their more irritating characters as their punching bag, like one of the other characters featured in this article. The poor Sandbag first appeared and started taking beatings in Super Smash Bros. Melee and we don't know when the senseless violence against him will stop.
Mashtooth appears in The Legendary Starfy, a platform game originally released in 2008. The game was the first of the Starfy series to be released in North America since the earlier games were not deemed a good fit for the North American market. Mashtooth is the final boss in the game and, as such, is quite an obnoxious villain. He is a dragon-like tyrant that suffers from anger fits and is in general just a mean guy, even to his own minions. You know that Mashtooth means business when he can sniff up the other characters through his nostrils. In typical tyrannical nature, he rules by striking fear into his enemies and minions alike and won't think twice before eating his own minions that bring him bad tidings.
6 Very Gnawty
The Gnawties are beaver-like creatures featuring in the Donkey Kong games. In Donkey Kong Country, you find a special Gnawty named Very Gnawty, which is clearly a word-play of the phrase very naughty. He is the first boss you will encounter and rules the Kongo Jungle. Beware, since he is tougher and uglier than your average gnawties. He is also quite big, bigger in fact than our villain-turned-hero Donkey Kong. A beaver is large indeed when it has become larger than a gorilla. Very Gnawty is a nasty fellow and attacks by jumping right at the player like an angry rat and he looks like one too. In the end he doesn't pose much of a threat to the Kongs and he is easily defeated by evading his attacks and jumping on his back.
5 Wrinkly Kong's Ghost
Wrinkly Kong first appeared in Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest released in 1995. She is a grandma-like gorilla part of the Kong Family and usually gives advice, like grandmas tend to do. She was very old, even at the time of her debut and so it is that later we come to find out that she had died after the events of Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble. The weird thing is that she is not cut from the game, but rather Nintendo made her come back as a ghost in a nightgown. She still plays mostly the same role after her return and gives advice as before. The ghost of a gorilla grandma in a nightgown is a pretty weird character if you think about it for a second.
Xananab first appears in DK: Jungle Climber and is a mix between an alien and a banana. On top of that, to make it even more bizarre, it has human-like features too. It is somehow partially peeled with a wood-like body underneath. The Xananabs descent from the Planet Plantaen which itself is also fittingly banana-shaped. We don't know what Nintendo was thinking or smoking when they came up with Xananab, but it is definitely not their most inspiring character. The alien-banana weirdo and his fellows, being provoked by King K. Rool and his Kremlin gang, at first attack the Kongs, who fight back and destroy their spaceship. Later, Xananab realizes that the Kongs are not the bad guys. When all things were cleared up, the Kongs decide to help the bizarre fruitlet folk.
3 Macho Grubba
Grubba, and his hulk-version Macho Grubba, appears in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, the roleplaying game released in 2004. He is a large Clubba and when he is powered up, he turns into Macho Grubba. In his normal form, Grubba appears quite charming with his fancy designer suit, but looks can be deceiving and it quickly becomes clear that he is selfish, aggressive and likes to trash talk other characters. He can be a smooth talker when the situation requires it though. When Grubba powers up via his power-draining machine, he turns into an even worse version of himself being larger, uglier and more aggressive. Like The Hulk when he is changed, Macho Grubba's size, skin, hairstyle and emotional state are also different when he is in his powered-up form.
Fryguy is a fiery character, first appearing in Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic, which was a video game only released in Japan. He first made his western appearance in Super Mario Bros. 2. He resembles a living fire being and is the boss of World 4, which is a bit strange, since World 4 is mostly snow, ice and water. Fryguy looks like fire with a Zorro mask on and has a hot temper, because when he is angry he starts spitting out fireballs. Also, any hero who touches Fryguy will obviously burn, since he is pure fire. Instead the nasty guy is defeated by throwing mushroom blocks at him, which at first only makes matters worse, since he splits into four small Fry guys who also need to be defeated.
Buzzybat appears in Kirby Mass Attack as a boss in stage 9. As the name suggests, he is supposed to be a bat, but he looks more like a cat with wings. Being yellow also doesn't help since we don't know of any yellow bats, only a giant white one in the movie Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls. Strictly speaking, there might not be yellow cats either, but we do know of ginger cats, which are relatively close to yellow, at least in a man's mind. But if you think his normal form is strange, he has an even crazier second form in which he resembles a flying tombstone with one eye. In this form, it is said to be better to just avoid him altogether and attacking him in this form is a grave mistake (pun intended).