Ah, villains - the figures we love to hate. The villains of video games are frequently heinous, clever, strong, guileful, and, to put it bluntly, absolute menaces to every other living thing in their presence. However, the most important quality in a villain is persistence - that is, the refusal to repent or to stop trying. Why? Well, because they ALWAYS end up losing in the end. :p But, hey, they get points for trying... well, they do <i>here</i>, at least.

Vaati, villainous floating eye/wind mage, is the minor recurring villain of the Zelda series, and he has three major roles. In Four Swords, he kidnaps Princess Zelda because he takes a fancy to her (in other words, he wants to rape her nonstop.) Link has to use the Four Sword to break himself into four sentient pieces in order to stop him. Vaati does it AGAIN in Four Swords Adventures, only this time it's really GANON who's behind the whole thing. Finally, in The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, he turns Princess Zelda to stone after a fencing contest and shatters the Picori Blade, forcing Link to go to a great deal of trouble to get the thing reforged; meanwhile, Vaati takes over Hyrule Castle and makes it his own personal playhouse. Vaati's only #10 because he's appeared so infrequently (the same limiting factor that plagued Dr. Weil earlier on this list,) but he's REALLY managed to whip up big trouble every time he's showed his face. I'd love to see more of the little bugger, I really would.

Ah, Bagular. This blue-skinned, white-bearded, cape-wearing geezer is by FAR the most persistent thorn in Bomberman's side. Most of Bomberman's other enemies tend to get killed off permanently after one game (Exhibit A: Altair. Exhibit B: Shertoth. Exhibit C: that supercomputer that called itself Brain. Exhibit D: Emperor Terrorin. I really could go on and on and on.) Furthermore, the villains that HAVE endured are always the ones who are associated with Bagular in some way. The Five Dastardly Bombers? Bagular created 'em. Mr. Meanie? He changed his name to Mujoe, and he's now Bagular's second-in-command in the present-day Hige Hige Bandits. Five Bomber Kings? Also made by Bagular. So, yeah, Bagular is the most pervasive evil force in the Bomberman universe, ALWAYS waiting for his next chance to strike at our loveable hero. His most recent appearance was in the Bomberman game for the PSP, but I chose Bomberman Hero to represent him because his plot in THAT game is especially devious (albeit a bit TOO similar to the plotline of the Star Wars trilogy.) Even though the Garaden Empire was Bagular's only set of underlings that happened to be a one-off deal, Bomberman Hero was still Bagular's finest hour. He's only #9, however, because while he appears in a lot of Bomberman games, he doesn't show up in ALL of them.

King Dedede is the CLASSIC antagonist of the Kirby series. This large, loudmouthed, gluttonous, and mischief-loving penguin REALLY likes giving the pink puffball a hard time. While the original Kirby's Dream Land was the only time he played the role of the MAIN villain, and he has indeed become more of a rival to Kirby than a true enemy in recent years (not unlike Meta Knight,) his actions still tend to qualify him as a villain, or perhaps as an anti-hero (unlike Meta-Knight, who is CLEARLY an anti-hero, if not a true hero himself.) While Kirby is often the protagonist of his games, his actions are sometimes rather impulsive and selfish (such as in Kirby: Squeak Squad, in which all he was trying to do was recover his stolen strawberry shortcake, and he pummeled an innocent Dedede out of mere suspicion towards the beginning of the game. Yes, Kirby DID destroy the Dark Nebula, but he still only wanted his shortcake.) While Dedede HAS done things for only himself (like stealing all of Dream Land's food in the aforementioned Kirby's Dream Land and its Kirby Super Star-embedded remake, Spring Breeze,) most of his misdeeds have been committed either under the influence of Dark Matter (as in Kirby's Dream Land 2 and Kirby's Dream Land 3,) or, in some cases, out of the desire to help Dream Land (such as when he broke the Star Rod, the power source of the Fountain of Dreams, to keep it out of the hands of the REAL villain, the Cloaked Nightmare, during the events of Kirby's Adventure and its remake, Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land.) Dedede also went around kidnapping people during the events of the Subspace Emissary because he knew in advance of Tabuu's fearsome Off Waves, and he wanted to form a legion of reserve troops to self-activate and come to the rescue if everyone else got clobbered by Tabuu - which DID end up happening. It was Dedede, Luigi, and Ness who ultimately rescued everyone else so that they could continue the invasion of Subspace - though, at the time of his kidnappings, it sure LOOKED like he was up to no good. Dedede also helped Kirby out in Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, using his strength and his mighty hammer to bust through rooms that Kirby never could have managed to bypass on his own. However, the game that REALLY gets Dedede on this list is Kirby Super Star Ultra, specifically "Revenge of the King". After being foiled in Spring Breeze, racing Kirby (and losing horribly) in the Gourmet Race, and recuperating while Kirby takes on the likes of Dyna Blade, Meta Knight, and Marx, King Dedede throws down the gauntlet and challenges Kirby to a grudge match. Kirby accepts the challenge (it's not revealed whether or not Dedede did anything REALLY nasty to coerce the puffball into attacking him, but it's commonly assumed that he did,) and finds himself having to overcome a frighteningly harsh series of challenges just to GET to Dedede, who then attacks him in an electrified cage match with a fearsome mechanized hammer. Just for fighting Kirby for the heck of it, plus everything else he's done up until now, King Dedede earns the # 8 spot in the list of The Top Ten Most Persistent Video Game Villains.

I hate the pharmaceutical industry. I really, REALLY do. Pharmaceutical companies are bad enough in the real world, selling drugs as "cures" to diseases when they actually make people sick, and corrupting the government so that they can get away with it; in video games, they're even worse. The Umbrella Corporation is a PERFECT example of this, thanks to their antics in actually CREATING NEW VIRUSES to make people sick with. When it turns out that the virus makes people into zombies - also making them super-strong and super-sturdy in the process, albeit mindless and with a bit of a brain fetish - the Umbrella Corporation realizes that it can make a killing selling the damn things to the military, and proceeds to infect an entire city with it for the sake of "research". One of their top executives, Albert Wesker, goes so far as joining the police force tasked with cleaning up the mess so that he can stab them all in the back at the most inconvenient moment possible. Even after Umbrella Corporation is forcibly dissolved after Raccoon City gets nuked in Resident Evil 3, Albert Wesker gets himself entangled in the whole Los Illuminados mess so that he can resurrect the company. He truly is a magnificent bastard, a man worthy of hatred like no other, and he is a <b>PERFECT</b> emblem of why the pharmaceutical industry is nothing more than PURE DAGNASTY EVIL!!!! IT'S JUST A FACT!!!!!!!! I'd actually love to rank him higher, but he just hasn't had a long enough history. There are only four major Resident Evil games, and that isn't enough for a high placement on this list. However, he still beat Bagular because of the sheer scope of his misdeeds. He also beat Dedede for being a 100% slimeball (unlike the penguin, who turns out to be fighting for the cause of good as often as for evil or for himself.)

Next on the list is Sigma, the original Maverick who went on to corrupt dozens of other Reploids and turn them against the humans. X and Zero repeatedly dismantle this robotic fiend, yet he keeps managing to come back again and again. How the hell does he manage to rebuild himself, anyways? To top it all off, Sigma has a knack for performing Dracula-like transformations to <i>really</i> keep our heroes on their toes. Really, Sigma is a VERY underappreciated villain, and he should be higher on this list, he really should, but there are just too many villains who are even better - or should I say worse - than he is. Such as...

Dr. Wily. He starts my Top 5 list of the most persistent of them all, and for good reason. Over a little matter of being jealous of his colleague Dr. Light, the guy steals his robot designs and tries to use them to take over the world. It is Rock Man, a mere cleaning robot turned battle machine, who destroys the Robot Masters and ultimately defeats Wily himself. As it turns out, Wily escapes, builds some robots of his own, and tries the whole thing again. And again. And again. And again. Wily just plain DOES NOT QUIT in his attempts to one-up Dr. Light. When Dr. Light tried to make a sentient robot named X, Wily created his own sentient robot, Zero, with the purpose of destroying Light's creation. (That particular plan backfired spectacularly, as X and Zero quickly became the best of friends.) Wily's also used some rotten tricks to throw Mega Man off the scent, like forcing Dr. Cossack to challenge Dr. Light when Wily kidnapped the former's daughter, getting Dr. Light framed for a crime that Dr. Wily committed, and hosting a robot tournament to trick Mega Man into getting into a fight he couldn't win (but it turned out he could.) Wily also created Bass, Mega Man's rival, and attempts to use "Evil Energy" to corrupt the world. Wily may be persistent, but he's smart enough not to use the same exact plan twice. That doesn't stop him from failing, but he always tries again. Really, it's a shame that I had to relegate him to spot #5, but there are more evil villains than him...

Dracula is one of the biggest reasons why I CREATED this list. The guy just doesn't quit. The Belmont family kills him - yes, KILLS him - time and time again, and yet he STILL just keeps coming back to harass them every 100 years - and in practice, he's been restored FAR more frequently than that. And every time, he makes a new attempt to destroy humanity. He's come up with some REALLY rotten tricks over the years, such as laying a couple of curses on the land as he was defeated - the first of which made everybody hopping mad for revenge over the most trivial of things, and the second of which almost killed Simon. There was another instance where he kidnapped Christopher Belmont's son, Solieyu, and tried to use him as a vessel for his own resurrection. And then there was the time when his niece started World War I just to bring him back from the underworld over a little matter of being executed for vampirism and family ties... Really, I could go on and on and on. Oh, and did I mention that Dracula's right-hand man is actually Death itself? I only WISH I was kidding. The Grim Reaper is EXTREMELY loyal to his master, even going to the incredible lengths of USING the Morris family to stop some uppity artist from taking Dracula's place during World War II. Oh, and it was Death who made Dracula into the big-time threat to life as we know it in the first place. When Drac was just Mathias Cronqvist, a brilliant tactician moping over his dead wife, he made a pact with Death to find the Crimson Stone and wrest control of the Ebony Stone from a vampire called Walter Bernhard, by using his best buddy Leon Belmont in a fashion that involved putting HIM in pretty much the exact same position. (The details of that story can be found in the hyperlink.) Dracula wasn't stopped for good until 1999, when his castle was sealed into a freakin' SOLAR ECLIPSE to cut off his power and "free his soul from the chains of destiny", and even then he almost got reincarnated in 2035. But that's a whole other story. Long rant made short - Dracula is one heck of a vampiric misanthropic bastard who just plain REFUSES to die - well, permanently, anyways. Sigma may be akin to a robotic Dracula, but he just plain comes up short when compared to the real deal.

As we move into the top three, we meet up with the list's second entry from the Legend of Zelda. Since Bellum, Onox, Veran, and Majora all only showed up once, you should IMMEDIATELY know who I'm talking about. Yes, it's Ganondorf, the King of Evil. Like Dracula, his direct predecessor on this list, Ganondorf absolutely REFUSES to die. The only male born to the Gerudo Tribe in a century - indeed, males only crop up among them once every one hundred years - Ganondorf is the very embodiment of evil in the Zelda Universe. He holds one of the three pieces of the legendary Triforce - specifically, the Triforce of Power - which only enhances his already formidable dark magic, physical strength, and expert swordsmanship. The result? Ganondorf is a freakin' immortal one-man army. I don't think a nuke could scratch the guy. He could eat the entire Marine Corps for breakfast. The only thing that can really kill him is the Master Sword (or the Silver Bow and Arrows, in some cases,) and even THAT only gets rid of him temporarily. He's been stabbed through the heart (and then, in one instance where it wasn't the Master Sword that impaled him, Ganondorf actually PULLED THE SWORD OUT OF HIS CHEST AND KEPT IT,) impaled in the head AND TURNED TO STONE, locked up in a shining prison zone, cut to ribbons, turned into a pincushion, and he STILL comes back for more. He also doesn't mind getting others to do his dirty work for him. He was behind Vaati in Four Swords Adventures, Onox and Veran in Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages, Zant in Twilight Princess, and the Helmaroc King in The Wind Waker. But when Ganondorf decides to do things himself, he gets NASTY. He virtually destroyed Hyrule in just seven years, and then he wreaked so much havoc on it at a later date that the gods had no choice but to flood it to death, kind of like in the story of Noah, only without the happy ending where the floodwaters eventually go away. Ganondorf is one seriously bad dude who just doesn't quit, and there are only TWO villains out there who have the tenacity to trump his.

Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik is an even crazier scientist than Dr. Wily. (At least Wily has a REASON for wanting to take over the world... even if that reason is just an inferiority complex.) Eggman may have an I.Q. of 300, but Wily clearly has him beat in the area of common sense - Eggman will often use the same kind of plot over and over again, with very similar results (i.e. try to tame ancient godlike monster and use its power to take over the world, then be taken completely by surprise when it decides to blast the everloving **** out of you.) Still, for all his childishness, Eggman has brought Sonic quite a bit of grief over the years... though Sonic sees it as "time to party!!!!" rather than "Oh my GOD what have you DONE?!?" (Ya gotta love that optimistic, fun-loving streak.) In virtually all of the games in the series (except for Shadow the Hedgehog,) Eggman's ALWAYS the one who gets things going, even if he isn't the final boss in the end. (In Shadow the Hedgehog, Eggman is opposed to Black Doom from the get-go, because he can't conquer a city if it isn't there.) Eggman's also built some REALLY impressive machines in his quest to defeat Sonic, like the Egg Robo of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (and, for that matter, the Wing Fortress and Death Egg,) that big machine with the hand in Sonic the Hedgehog 3, his Mega Egg Bot from Sonic & Knuckles, the Egg Viper from Sonic Adventure, the Egg Emperor from Sonic Heroes, the Egg Wyvern from Sonic 360, and the Egg Dragoon from Sonic Unleashed. He went to great lengths to see his plan through in Unleashed, and his metal paradise, Eggmanland, was a pain in the butt to get through. Actually, ALL of Eggman's bases have been fiendishly designed, frequently pushing Sonic's abilities to their limits. He's also used some truly diabolical traps in his villainous career, as seen in Sonic Adventure 2, Sonic 360, and Sonic Unleashed. Like Wily, he created a counterpart to his archenemy for the express purpose of defeating him, and the metallic copy has taken his mission a bit TOO seriously as of late. While Wily can be devious, and pretty much always is, Dr. Eggman often acts like a buffoon. But make no mistake about it - Eggman is a genius, and when he REALLY puts his mind to use, NOBODY, not even Sonic, is guaranteed to survive.

The top villain of all time, in terms of sheer resilience, is none other than Bowser. Yeah, he's an oaf sometimes, but when he means business, HE MEANS BUSINESS. He kidnaps Princess Peach over and over and over again to the point where it's almost a habit of his, and he gets REALLY upset when he's beaten to the punch. Yeah, the other villains in the Mario series are awesome - I'd LOVE to see Cackletta, Grodus, and Bleck make return appearances - but Bowser is the original bad boy of the Mushroom Kingdom and will ALWAYS be its main evil superstar. Mario is seldom able to hurt him directly without a Fire Flower, instead having to rely on tricks like lowering the bridge from under him, tricking him into crashing through the floor, tossing his own Mechakoopas right back at him, tossing him into bombs, smashing his hot tub, and tricking him into stomping on molten lava. In Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World, Bowser had his kids, the Koopalings, go forth and wreak havoc; he did much the same thing in Super Mario Sunshine and Super Mario Galaxy (especially the former,) but instead of the Koopalings, we had to deal with Bowser Jr., who's even MORE of a chip off the ol' block than the Koopalings were. Bowser's greatly amplified his game as time went on, always finding a way to raise the stakes with each successive kidnapping of poor Princess Peach. He abducted the Star Spirits and made himself invincible in Paper Mario, quite easily rivaling the sequel's Sir Grodus for sheer badassery. He went quite far out of his way to ruin Mario's vacation in Super Mario Sunshine, made Peach's Castle into his very own warped art gallery in Super Mario 64, and in Super Mario Galaxy, he's had his true shining hour - he tried to destroy the entire universe so he could recreate it as he saw fit!!!!!! Now THAT is the mark of a bad guy who doesn't mess around!!!!! Yes, Bowser has taken some time to just kick back and relax by playing sports or screwing up Mario's parties, and he DOES have a good side - he just REALLY hates to show it - when it comes down to business, nobody knows how to do it quite like Bowser does. Of course, Mario always beats him in the end, but does he quit? NEVER!!!!! In Luigi's Mansion, it's implied that King Boo really IS Bowser, which means that Mario actually KILLED him, and he's STILL making the Mario Bros.'s lives into a nightmare!!! That was proven to be false when Bowser showed up alive and well in Super Mario Sunshine, but he WAS reduced to a pile of bones early in New Super Mario Bros., and he actually fought the Mario Bros. in that state!!!! Ultimately, his son revived him for the final showdown, and he was one tough turtle to bypass!!!! Mario and Bowser have had a LONG history, and it really doesn't matter how many times Bowser loses - he's ALWAYS ready to pick himself up, dust himself off, and snatch the Princess all over again!!!! He may not be pure evil, but Bowser's incredible persistence MORE than makes up for his nice streak!!!!!!!

And there you have it. The ten most persistent villains of all time. There are plenty of others I'd have liked to include (like Andross from the Star Fox series, Dr. Neo Cortex from the Crash Bandicoot series, King K. Rool from the Donkey Kong games, Dark Matter/0 from the Kirby games, and Gruntilda from Banjo-Kazooie and its sequels), but there was only so much room on the list. Hopefully, these guys won't succeed anytime soon. But I'm sure that won't stop them from causing trouble all over again!!!!

List by Luigifan18 (03/16/2009)

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