This is my tribute to all protagonists that have no voice, no personality and depth. You read right, I am talking about protagonists that have no own personality. Protagonists that get forged during the events of a game in which they take the leading roll. Characters that could be yourself, since they don’t tell you what you – as a player – have to think about the happenings you encounter while playing the game. The game of course needs to allow to have players making own decisions. Here is my favorite protagonists in a passive role. Spoilers ahead!
Googles (he got the name tru his military googles he wears), from System Shock 2.
At the start of Shock2, the player chooses between three branches in the military organisation UNN. He picks his branch, his basic skills and starts his duty on the Battlecruiser UNN Rickenbacker. Nobody knows exactly what happened to the silent protagonist until he wakes from cryo sleep on the Von Braun, the spaceship which gets military protection from the Rickenbacker. What brought him there? What happened to his body? What the hell happened there!? His memory is erased and he faces an unknown force. During the game, various mutated enemies and gone mad military robots later, he needs to find out that he got betrayed by the most infamous super computer intelligence of gaming history SHODAN as its avatar.
Now imagine Googles to have a voice and own dialog. What would he say? What would be his reaction? I’m glad that I don’t have to deal with that, since I am Googles. I am his thoughts and voice. To tell you the truth, I would be shocked, I would feel treated like shit. I am the protagonist facing this betrayal.