One of the things they teach you at management school (at least, I presume so; I’ve never been) is that it’s important to deploy your workforce in a manner that makes the best use of their unique talents.
If someone’s really good at talking on the phone, and another guy is really good at email, you don’t have the phone guy do all the emails.
In spite of this, many video game heroes don’t seem like they’re being assigned to the worlds most in need of their services. What they need is some sort of management to send them off to where their powers can do the most good:
The main character of the Halo series is equipped with a vast amount of weaponry, as well as a suit of protective armor. There’s very little that he can’t blast through, including doors, traps, and infinite enemies.
This makes him the ideal candidate to run through Hyrule. Link always seems to have trouble collecting a sword and then fighting his way through screens of enemies that boomerangs simply bounce off of. Master Chief, on the other hand, could blow them all away without breaking a sweat, not to mention using explosives to open the doors without having to hunt for switches and keys.
And he could totally blow the crap out of those blocks that get in the way in Tetris.
Bub and Bob
You probably didn’t know their names, but these were the two dinosaurs from Bubble Bobble, back in the day. They couldn’t kill their enemies because they had no weapons, so they were forced to trap them in bubbles and then shoo them off. They’ve subsequently reappeared in the Bust-A-Move series, where they continue to shoot bubbles. Which isn’t that helpful, since what you really want in that series is fewer bubbles, not more.
So where should they go? Somewhere that constant creation of extra bubble balls would be useful. There are a number of places these dinosaurs would come in handy, ranging from Wii Bowling to the classic Marble Madness. Hell, they could probably wreak havoc in some soccer games, too. Get these guys out of bubble puzzle land and onto a sports team.
Kirby can float fairly easily, and yet he spends his time in a world with lots of solid ground and enemies. Clearly, where he ought to be sent is Pitfall world, where the poor bastard is constantly falling into pits because he can’t float. It’s a world where the main hazards are holes in the floor. Perfect for a floater. There aren’t a whole lot of enemies to fight, which is just as well because Kirby’s not great at fighting enemies larger than his stomach anyway.
Another useful place to send Kirby would be MegaMan’s world. Fighting the bosses in MegaMan is often a difficult task because you don’t have a good weapon, but Kirby could just suck them right up and then, *bam*, good weapon acquired.
Another relatively unknown name from a relatively well-known game, the main character of the early Grand Theft Auto games is putting his talents to waste in a city already filled with criminals and crime. In a world filled with theft, crime, and murder, how notable is just one more carjacker?
Send him to The Sims. There he’ll find an entire peaceful community ripe for the plucking. They just keep adding value to their homes, and with so little crime in the neighborhood, Claude would have free reign to pretty much immediately become the number one crime boss in Simsville without all the trouble of working his way up the ranks.
The main character from Portal can make a portal between any two points and then travel between them. But honestly, in her own universe, half the time the problem would be easier to solve by someone who could just jump a little. Her talents, and expensive experimental weaponry, are being put to waste in that facility.
Meanwhile, in Donkey Kong land, rather than the tedious jumping over all those barrels, it’d be a lot easier to just portal to where you wanted to go. Or heck, it’d be very useful in Pac-man land to help you avoid the ghosts. Going off the edge of the screen is a good start, but it really can’t compare with the portals.
Dig Dug is a classic from the old days, a little guy who can dig through things and also inflate enemies from far away. The ability to stomp on enemies (like Mario) or roll through enemies (like Sonic) would have been much more useful in his world. But instead, this poor fellow had to dig through sand and hope that a rock might fall on enemy heads.
His talents are being wasted. Take Dig Dug into the world of Super Bomberman and he becomes a powerhouse. No more waiting for bombs to blow up in order to carve out those spaces with powerups; just dig right through. And rather than trying to time bombs to trap enemies, you can simply inflate them next to a bomb, and BOOM!
These are just a few video game characters not be used to their potential – what characters would you use in other games? Maybe a crossover universe is in order!