It’s that time of year again, where couples celebrate their love for one another, Valentine’s Day. As a result, I thought it would be a perfect time to make a list about the top ten couples in gaming. However, we will not only showcase romantic pairings, but this list will showcase a few platonic couples and bromances. For the purposes of this list, we will lump multiple iterations of characters in a series that we feel fit into one spot, so we can have as much variety as possible.
10. Professor Layton & Claire (Professor Layton & The Unwound Future)
I knew I wanted to fit this one somewhere on the list even though it was only during one game. However, the relationship between Professor Layton & Claire has stuck with me since I played through the game. As a young couple in love, Claire is killed in a time-traveling machine accident, which completely changes Layton as a person in some ways. The Unwound Future has many twists and turns to do with this relationship, especially at the end, so I won’t go any further as I don’t want to spoil many of the mysteries found in the game.
9. Banjo & Kazooie (Banjo-Kazooie series)
This is definitely a non-romantic entry on the list, but I couldn’t leave it off. Banjo and Kazooie are the two leads of the Banjo-Kazooie franchise and they are about as close as two video game characters can get considering Kazooie is almost always in a backpack that Banjo is carrying. These two rely on one another to make it through each of these games, and neither is more important than the other to your mission. Kazooie has some fun and sassy banter with Banjo throughout, which provide some good laughs.
8. Sora & Riku/Roxas & Axel(Kingdom Hearts series)
The first bromance on the list, and not just one but two of them. Sora and Riku actually don’t have too many interactions in the first game where Riku isn’t possessed by Ansem, but their relationship still shines through even when apart. It is arguably at its best in the most recent Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance as we see the lengths Riku will go through to save his best friend Sora. On the other side, we have Sora’s nobody Roxas and his best friend Axel that he has known since his inception. We see a lot of their relationship in Kingdom Hearts 2, but it goes even deeper with their backstory through Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days. Sora and Kairi is an honorable mention for the series, but the bromances shine brighter in this case.
7. Commander Shepard & Your Romantic Choice
This one I decided to leave a little open considering there are so many romantic choices you can choose from the game. Whether you choose to make your Shepard male or female, there are multiple relationship types you can choose from, both straight and gay. Having the ability to choose who you want to pursue, regardless of your success, you feel a lot more involved with the experience itself. It’s very rewarding when you start a relationship in the first game and manage to carry it over to three, as I did with Ashley. There are even situations where you can stray from that relationship in the second game with someone like Miranda, and feel the repercussions by the third game. You can choose to have little flings in the individual games, such as with Kelly if that is more your style.
6. Marcus & Dom (Gears of War 1-3)
What kind of couples list could be complete without the bromance that is Marcus and Dom from the Gears of War series. Growing up together, they have always been by each other’s side through everything. Essentially being brothers, it is always good to know you have someone watching your back in the type of world seen in Gears of War. A major event that occurs in Gears of War 3 truly shows how close these two are, but I can’t really go into too much detail without spoiling.