The Best Video Game Dads Of All Time

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There’s no shortage of bad video game dads. Ghetsis from pokemon black and whiteLord Harkon from Skyrim and Hades from, well, Hades are all father figures that spring to mind. But with Father’s Day around the corner, we thought it would be the perfect time to reflect on some of the best video game dads that are mostly a bunch of grumps, but all have a heart of gold.

Affectionately referred to as daddy sims, here they all are, in no particular order.

Warning! There are spoilers a-plenty down below.

The best video game dads

Geralt of Rivia from The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt

Geralt of Rivia and Ciri from The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt
Image: CD Projekt Red

Who says adoptive parents can’t be any good as biological ones? The bond between the witcher Geralt and his young ward, Ciri transcends blood, magic and even time and space. In contrast, Ciri’s relationship with her bio-dad (the emperor, Emhyr) is steeped in hatred and bitterness. Emhyr only sees her as a political tool to secure his hold on the throne.

Geralt, on the other hand, treats Ciri as the single most important person in his life, alongside Yennefer and Vesemir, of course. In The Witcher 3: The Wild HuntGeralt is charged by Emhyr to find Ciri but our witcher doesn’t do so for reward or payment – ​​he only seeks to protect Ciri from the Wild Hunt, a group of vicious spectres who want to exploit her ancient elven powers.

Once Geralt finally reunites with Ciri, the pair join forces with their friends to defeat the White Frost and the Wild Hunt for good. Along the way, Geralt (and the player) will need to make choices in relation to Ciri that will affect the overall ending of the game. If you make decisions that give Ciri more autonomy and confidence, you should earn yourself a happy ending.

But to get there, you’ll need to reject payment from her father for finding her, enjoy a snowball fight and wreck a lab together. These choices are what firmly cements him as one of the best video game dads of all time and the king of father-daughter bonding.

Where to buy

Kratos from God of War

God of War: Kratos and Atreus
Image: Santa Monica Studios

Admittedly, Kratos wasn’t a very good dad to his firstborn child, seeing as he killed her in a rage. But, he more than makes up for the past through his relationship with Atreus in God of War.

While Kratos is a bit of a stiff at the beginning of the game, over the course of the story he slowly opens up to Atreus by telling him boring stories and mentoring his fighting prowess. Although Kratos isn’t a very affectionate parent, the second Atreus is in danger he goes into full Dad Mode.

The God of War will stop at nothing to ensure Atreus’ safety and while he often chastises the boy for acting recklessly, he doesn’t leave Atreus weak and defenseless. As you progress through the game, you’ll see Atreus evolve from “adequate” to a fierce warrior in his own right.

Sure, Kratos keeps a few a lot of secrets from his son at the beginning of the game, but he does so to keep the Boy safe and isn’t that the most important thing? We like to think so.

Where to buy God of War

Amazon ($9) | Big W ($12) | eBay ($18.80)

If you’re already familiar with Kratos and Atreus’ story, you can pre-order the sequel, God of War Ragnarok below:

Rost from Horizon Zero Dawn

Horizon zero dawn
Image: Guerilla Games

Another adoptive parent, Rost becomes a father figure to Aloy in Horizon Zero Dawn after she seemingly appears out of nowhere.

As outcasts, Rost never wavers in his paternal love for Aloy, even treating her no differently after Lanscra punishes him for performing the Naming Ritual on Aloy. Rost continues to live in harmony with Aloy for 12 years, but when she turns 18 and demonstrates her skill as an accomplished hunter, he tells her they must part ways.

Although it sounds harsh at the time, it’s merely in Aloy’s best interest to join Forsaken Village as a Brave, like he was. After all, if you love something, it’s best to let it go.

But like many parents, Rost chose to watch on from a distance, just in case Aloy ever fell into any serious danger. After Aloy undertook and succeeded in the Proving the next day, the tribe was attacked by the Eclipse cult. While Aloy was able to fend them all off, a fatal attack from the cult leader forced Rost to step in. In the end, Rost saves Aloy when the cultists activate a bunch of explosives in a tear-jerking final sacrifice. And *sob*, we’re still not over it.

Where to buy

Amazon ($9) | Big W ($12) | eBay ($17.95)

Joel Miller from The Last of Us

Best video game dads: Joel with Ellie
Image: Naughty Dog

Surrogate fathers really do run the (video game) world. While Joel did have a biological daughter at the beginning of The Last of Ushe was tragically unable to protect her when they were attacked by a soldier.

Joel was a fantastic single father to Sarah. Even though his job forced him to work long hours, he always found time for his daughter, whether that involved going on cruises or entertaining her with museums and hikes.

After Sarah’s death, Joel falls in with a bad crowd, entering the dark underbelly of the smuggling world. Through his illicit activities, he meets a young teenage girl, named Ellie, who he is charged with transporting. As they continue through their journey and face many threats, Joel and Ellie repeatedly save each other.

But perhaps Joel’s defining moment as a parent is when he battles his way through a hospital after learning that a surgery on Ellie will inevitably result in her death. Sure, this surgery could create a vaccine that could save many lives, but Ellie’s life is not a sacrifice Joel is willing to make.

Ultimately, Joel’s new bond with Ellie is what turns him off a dark path and helps to heal the trauma he endured after losing Sarah.

Where to buy

you can grab The Last of Us here:

Amazon ($9) | Big W ($12) | eBay ($22)

And if you want to play The Last of Us: Part 2you can grab a copy here:

Amazon ($19) | eBay ($29.80)

Bowser from any Mario game

Best video game dads: Bowser and Bowser Jr in Nintendo's Parental Controls Video
Image: Nintendo

Perhaps a controversial choice, Bowser knows how to involve his son, aptly named Bowser Jr., in the family business. That business being kidnapping blond princesses named after subpar fruits.

Working together means they’re obviously doing a lot of father/son bonding and isn’t that just the sweetest? They also play golf and tennis, go on luxury vacations to far-off islands and partake in a bit of go-kart racing. Total parenting goals.

Where to buy

Here are our favorites picks if you want to see Bowser and Bowser Jr. together:

Mario Party Superstars

Amazon ($68) | Big W ($64) | eBay ($69)

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Amazon ($65) | Big W ($64) | eBay ($74.95)

Super Mario Odyssey

Big W ($64) | eBay ($69)

Which video games do you think should’ve made the list?

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