Our video game heroes show that pink isn’t just pretty.
Recent events have made pink (hex code #fe18a3) a trending color in the Philippines. For one, it’s the unofficial color of the opposition campaign, and it has become the color of those fighting for change in the country.
Prior to this, the color had also become associated with protest, with various protest movements adopting the color last year. In the U.S., a number of high-profile leaders and activists took to wearing pink as a visual symbol of their fight for change and democracy.
Of course, for video game fans, pink being associated with heroes isn’t anything new. Throughout the years, more than a few video game heroes have donned this dynamic color
With this in mind, we here at Variable have come together with five of our favorite video game heroes wearing pink.
We start our list off with Nintendo’s pink fluffball. Initially conceived as a more kid-friendly hero to compliment Mario—who’s had grown older at the time—Kirby has earned his place on Nintendo’s pantheon alongside his more famous predecessor. To date, he’s sold over 41 million copies of his games, not including crossover games such as the Super Smash Bros. series.
Kirby’s powers also serve as an interesting lesson of sorts. Unlike Mario, who simply stomped on his opponents, Kirby is able to absorb his foes and take their abilities. It teaches players that they can’t just rely on what they already know, but that they can also learn from their opponents and eventually use the latter’s abilities to beat them.
Final Fantasy VII‘s Aerith tends to be remembered more for her sacrifice in the original game over anything else. But beyond that is a spunky, sassy girl with a big heart that isn’t afraid to get into a scrap.
While this was already on display in the 1997 original, the recent Final Fantasy VII Remake allowed players to get reacquainted with this side of Aerith. Here, Aerith practically drags Cloud along in what should be his mission to rescue Tifa from Don Corneo. And when confronted with the Don’s goons, she also shows that she’s quite handy with a steel chair, showing that, just because a girl wears pink, she can’t also be tough.
Did you really think we’d forget Super Mario‘s princess in pink? The ruler of the Mushroom Kingdom first made an appearance in Super Mario Bros. as the game’s damsel-in-distress, where she was held up in Bowser’s castle waiting for Mario to rescue her.
These days, Princess Peach isn’t so helpless. She’s now a playable character in Super Smash Bros.—and a popular one, based on reader polls. She’s also the protagonist in two games: Princess Toadstool’s Castle Run and Super Princess Peach.
If you’re in Japan, though: August is National Peach Month—the fruit, and not the princess.
It’s no secret that Athena gets its name for the Greek goddess of wisdom. On whether that wisdom includes multiple outfit changes with each game, we’ll never know.
But the Chinese kenpo master should be part of this list—despite her numerous outfit changes, she still leaves something pink, whether it’s her hair or her clothes.
Beyond that, she’s deserving of a spot on this list for what she can do, which is a lot. She’s an idol, martial arts master, web designer and lacrosse player rolled up into one—she can literally do it all.
You gotta hand it to Dan Hibiki: He may look like a joke character, but his backstory is a stark contrast to his pink gi. It’s also a testament to a can-do attitude. What do you do when your master throws you out because you want to learn martial arts for revenge? Why, “improve” it, of course.
It’s also amusing that he calls his fighting style “Saikyo,” or the strongest. I mean, if that’s not what believing in yourself looks like, I don’t know what is.
Plus, there’s just a joy to be had when you beat someone who uses powerhouses like Ryu and Ken with, ehem, a so-called “joke” character.
So there you have it, our top 5 gaming heroes in pink. Do you have other pink heroes that we’d missed? Let us know in the comments below!
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