The 2022 Winter Olympics are upon us, featuring the world's best athletes competing in a series of snow- and ice-focused sports. While every major news outlet is speculating about which country will take home the most gold medals, Game Luster instead decided to consider which video game characters would do best at each sport, were they allowed to compete.
For the purpose of this article, real-world athletes who appear in video games were not considered. As fun as it is to think about the alternate universe where Tony Hawk is a snowboarder instead, real athletes would have unfortunately dominated this list had they been allowed.
10. Blizzard Man (Mega Man) - Cross-Country Skiing
This one is kind of cheating, because Blizzard Man was basically built for the sport - instead of feet, he has a pair of skiis, plus he's totally immune to the cold. However, seeing one of his robots take home the gold medal might inspire mad scientist Dr. Wily to finally stop repurposing the 'bots for evil and allow them to fulfill their original helpful goals. Maybe the next Mega Man game could see the titular hero competing in an all-bot Olympics?
9. The Four Links (The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures) - Bobsled
To win a bobsled race, you need a team of four people who can, essentially, work together as one. The better the communication and cooperation, the better the team's results. By that logic, the ideal bobsled team would be four versions of the same guy - and the four differently-colored Links from Four Swords Adventures seem like the perfect choice. They're even color-coded so you can tell which one is which as their bobsled races past you!
8. Princess Peach (Mario) - Ski Jump
I didn't want to choose someone who can actually fly for this sport, as that felt just a little bit too much like cheating. So I went with Princess Peach, who can't properly fly, but can use her umbrella to gracefully float in the air for far longer than normal jumpers. Plus, with five female athletes unfortunately disqualified for last-minute changes to the dress code rules for ski jumping, this sport needs an awesome woman who can show that you can take home the gold no matter what she wears.
7. Byakuya Togami (Danganronpa) - Singles Figure Skating
Due to the unique art style of the Danganronpa series, affluent heir Byakuya Togami's body has been calculated by fans to be more than 50% leg. Figure skating is a sport that would allow Byakuya to show off his great legs, performing elegant jumps and spins on the ice. Unfortunately, Byakuya is the prickly type who doesn't like to admit he has a single friend in the world, so he would likely only be willing to compete in the singles division.
6. Bayonetta (Bayonetta) - Biathlon
Biathlon is a sport that combines cross-country skiing and rifle shooting, and thus requires a pretty unique combination of skills to excel at. The perfect choice for this sport, however, is obvious. Bayonetta's athleticism and agility would allow her to easily manage the skiing parts, and then she could get the shooting done quicker than the competition thanks to the guns custom-built into her shoes. In fact, I bet Bayonetta could hit the target without even having to stop and remove her skis!
5. Dry Bowser (Mario) - Skeleton
4. Snom (Pokemon) - Curling
Curling is a fun sport to watch (especially because, unlike most Olympic offerings, most team uniforms tend to be the height of Dad Fashion.) However, at the end of the day, it is just people pushing a rock around, so it would clearly be a much better sport if the rock was replaced with something adorable - like the Ice/Bug type Pokemon Snom, for example! Unfortunately, the match might just end prematurely if Snom evolves into Frosmoth mid-curling and takes flight before anyone can give it a smack!
3. Sonic the Hedgehog (Sonic series) - Luge
As much as I wanted to choose Luigi for this honor (I mean, come on, the jokes write themselves - Luge-igi, anyone?) the simple fact is that luge is the speediest of the Olympic sports, with competitors regularly reaching 85 or even 90 miles per hour. Of course, nobody loves going fast as much as Sonic the Hedgehog! Add that to his extensive experience as an Olympic competitor in the Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games franchise, and he's a signature red running shoe-in for the victory. The nickname "Blue Blur" will reach a new level of accuracy as Sonic whizzes down the luge course at the speed of sound!
2. Ciri (The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt) - Speed Skating
Unfortunately, secondary protagonist Ciri had her awesome ice-skating battle cut out of the final release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, so it only exists in the original novels the game was based on. Basically, she lured an opponent out onto a frozen lake and then used magic to create a pair of skates and literally skate circles around her enemy until they were thoroughly defeated. Ciri would be an absolutely deadly competitor at speed skating - quite possibly literally.
1. The Ice Climbers (Ice Climbers) - Pairs Figure Skating
Ice Climbers Popo and Nana would likely be a shoo-in for any Winter Olympic sport. As their game title suggests, they have significant experience dealing with dangerous ice- and snow-related situations. However, I chose pair skating for them because the two of them are best known for their ability to work together under pressure and stay coordinated - to the point that they're even treated as a single fighter in the Super Smash Bros. series. Plus, wouldn't seeing Popo and Nana skating together and lifting each other up be just adorable?
These are GameLuster's ten choices for video game characters we'd like to see compete at the Winter Olympics. Which characters would you choose, and which sports would you have them compete in? Comment below and let us know!