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GTA Protagonists ranked from worst to best


Ahmedmfroezspeed

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billiejoearmstrong8
2 hours ago, JetNormalGuy said:

thing is, I I personally feel like Niko shouldn't be a gta protag, he is more suited for  movie-like thing. (hence why GTA IV story is the best since you feel like its a movie) he is good character but 

since I lately got the taste of playing GTA games as more like what the character would do as opposed to doing what I want, I don't really think Niko is the type of guy to steal a car and drive in a sidewalk just to hit the pedestrians.

this is something that a character like trevor would do since he is unstable.

I think Niko has the potential to become unstable. Not on and off like Trevor but he could have a breakdown/snap from all the trauma he's been through. Just have to pretend it's a one off thing when it happens and that it's "reset" when he dies/you turn the game off. That's how I think of it anyway. Like, this doesn't sound very stable to me:

 

 

Imo characters like Franklin, Vic, Luis or Michael going on murdering rampages is more ridiculous, they're not unbalanced enough for that. And stone cold killers like Toni, Tommy, or Claude kill because it's their business, they wouldn't be running around the streets causing mayhem just for fun either. You have to suspend disbelief with all of them to some extent.

Edited by billiejoearmstrong8
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JetNormalGuy

Yeah I started off judging the characters based on the story but started drifting towardsd what the player can do during gameplay, should probably re-do the list.

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Niobium

1. johnny klebitz 😍😍😍

2. niko bellic

3. vic vance

4. tommy vercetti

5. luis lopez

6, 7, & 8 (tied). carl johnson, michael de santa, franklin clinton

9. toni cipriani

10. claude

11. trevor phillips 🤮🤮🤮

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Ahmedmfroezspeed
On 3/28/2020 at 2:52 PM, JetNormalGuy said:

I don't really think Niko is the type of guy to steal a car and drive in a sidewalk just to hit the pedestrians.

this is something that a character like trevor would do since he is unstable.

same with Cipriani and Vercetti

don't forget about these two

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billiejoearmstrong8
1 hour ago, Ahmedmfroezspeed said:

same with Cipriani and Vercetti

don't forget about these two

I think they have more control over themselves though. Toni might do it secretly since he's such a sadistic creep, but for the most part they're both mob guys who kill for business reasons, because they were asked to kill specific people and to bring themselves money and power. Not a good look for a mob guy to go crazy killing random people in the streets for no reason. Although since there's rampages and stuff in 3D era and things aren't so deep it doesn't need to be justified so much.

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watersgta3
On 3/27/2020 at 2:58 PM, JetNormalGuy said:

I just don't rally see what's about niko and tommy, all I see is people praising them them and sh*tting on other protags just because

they come from mainsteam games (The trio from GTA V)

Yeah, I don't remember anyone "sh*tting" on the other protagonists for that reason. And what are you talking about "mainstream" games? All the GTA games are mainstream since it's one of the most popular series in video gaming.

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watersgta3
8 minutes ago, OmarMohammed said:

@watersgta3did the person deleted the comment or I'm blind?

You must have skipped to the second page. Because the user's comment is in the first page.

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MyNameIsNotImportantBro
On 3/28/2020 at 1:58 AM, JetNormalGuy said:

I just don't rally see what's about niko and tommy, all I see is people praising them them and sh*tting on other protags just because

they come from mainsteam games (The trio from GTA V)

You just don't like them, to me, Tommy is not overrated, that's why I like him, But he is not overrated like CJ or Niko, But do you think That CJ is underrated?

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Nappy
2 hours ago, billiejoearmstrong8 said:

there's rampages and stuff in 3D era

Are they cannon? I don’t think so..I think Trevor’s rampages may be canon

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billiejoearmstrong8
7 minutes ago, Payne said:

Are they cannon? I don’t think so..I think Trevor’s rampages may be canon

Not really, but I just mean the games are less "realistic" in general so it's easier to suspend disbelief when going on random killing sprees etc. 

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Nappy

What’s your take on protagonists’ style, i know you don’t like Claude. Do you like the way he works?

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JetNormalGuy
2 hours ago, watersgta3 said:

Yeah, I don't remember anyone "sh*tting" on the other protagonists for that reason. And what are you talking about "mainstream" games? All the GTA games are mainstream since it's one of the most popular series in video gaming.

By mainstream, I meant something like when you ask someone who isn't into the GTA franchise about GTA they will probably say GTA V because its the newest game in the series.and by sh*tting I meant like when GTA IV got released people where sh*tting on the game for being to dark and gritty and taking itself too seriously but when GTA V came out those people stopped sh*tting on GTA IV and went to attack GTA V for being over-the-top.

1 hour ago, OmarMohammed said:

You just don't like them, to me, Tommy is not overrated, that's why I like him, But he is not overrated like CJ or Niko, But do you think That CJ is underrated?

That's the thing, its your opinion. and my opinion is mine, so people should stop getting mad just because I don't think in the same way they do.

and yeah CJ is The most overrated protag ever, but guess what? I like him. and that is my opinion.

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Ahmedmfroezspeed
7 hours ago, Payne said:

Are they cannon?

since they're required for 100% completion, then the answer is yes

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jazzbone

How about it all gets settled 'Celebrity Deathmatch' style?
Not just the protags but also with some story characaters like Ricardo Diaz, Brucie, ect.

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watersgta3
On 4/6/2020 at 2:27 PM, JetNormalGuy said:

By mainstream, I meant something like when you ask someone who isn't into the GTA franchise about GTA they will probably say GTA V because its the newest game in the series.and by sh*tting I meant like when GTA IV got released people where sh*tting on the game for being to dark and gritty and taking itself too seriously but when GTA V came out those people stopped sh*tting on GTA IV and went to attack GTA V for being over-the-top.

When something is mainstream, it means it's the dominant trend of a certain source. Old things can still be considered mainstream, because it was the trend that was popular in the world during the time. Rappers can have music out nowadays and won't be as popular because they're underground, showing that not everything new is mainstream either. I think the correct word you're looking for is "modern" or "contemporary". Also, the only people sh*tting on GTA 4 during its release were mostly just San Andreas fanboys who were more obsessed with the over-the-top features and gameplay of the latter. Otherwise, GTA 4 was still well-liked during its time, and the consensus of GTA V is currently mixed, with many praising it for its graphics and mechanics while the other half criticizes it for its weak storyline and hit-and-miss characters.

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Dick Justice

What some people seem to forget when ranking characters is that flaws are a good thing. A flawless character should never exist, because that character is a boring superhero. There are no GTA characters without flaws. What is important is how you view and use them to judge character. The real question is: are the flaws intentional or are they mistakes in the writing? Here's my ranking from best to worst. 

 

Niko Bellic

You complain that everyone ranks this gun-toting and cousin-bowling Eastern European first? There's a reason for it. This is what you get when you combine character and story as well as this. Niko's odyssey through Liberty City is gut-wrenching and packed with emotion. He conveys the difficulties of immigrant life, while still maintaining Rockstar's signature sarcastic wit. A run away winner here, no other character in the series comes close to hitting these highs. 

 

Michael de Santa

A bit high compared to where others have him ranked. Rockstar sold Michael as a smooth-operator and "what you would get if you played as a GTA character who had already won." Yet, what we got is so much more than what we were sold. Michael is an egotistical, narcissistic bastard who is caught between being a deadbeat father and being a career criminal. His true self surfaced at times - such as the Diamond Store or when he was stuck in Sandy Shores - and when it does it is a sight to behold. 

 

Tommy Vercetti

A character with a bit more style than substance, in other words: the perfect representation of the III-era games. Tommy was the embodiment of old-school GTA; aggressive, unrelenting, cocky and brash ... and that Hawaiian shirt can not be denied. 

 

Trevor Phillips

Trevor has a surprising amount of heart that isn't really mentioned much. He's a doberman who is extremely loyal to those who he loves, and aggressive to those he doesn't, and those who manipulate and use him usually have a bad time coming. Where Trevor excels is in the sheer energy that Steven Ogg brought to the performance. He can be accused of many things, but boring is not one of them. I found playing as him to be a delight. 

 

Carl Johnson

What people easily forget is that CJ was Rockstar's first real attempt at creating a character that we - as players - are supposed to empathise this. They did not really perfect this until Niko Bellic and John Marston, but it stands to reason that we would never had had those characters if CJ had not had done the heavy lifting back in 2004. San Andreas was such a large and insanely ambitious adventure that CJ's character tends to get spread a bit thin across it, and sometimes his motivations are easily lost in the what instead of the why.  

 

Johnny Klebitz

The best thing the Episodes of Liberty City brought to the series was the fact that Rockstar could now tell smaller stories in their grander world. Johnny the Jew is the best example of this succeeding. His story could never fill a mainline game because it is so specific and focused, instead the story of this angry Biker caught between doing what was best for the gang and doing what his Pres wanted was perfectly suited for a short 25 mission bout. Side-note: Johnny Klebitz walked so Arthur Morgan could run.

 

Franklin Clinton

Oh Frank, what could have been. A decent character who unfortunately fell by the wayside halfway through his story. The character excelled when he was in the muck fighting alongside Lamar, a portion of the game that did not last as long as it should. Instead, he gets moved to a big, empty mansion to play third-seat in the Michael and Trevor show. He was young and ambitious, but that is where the interests end. What Franklin truly lacked as a character was a proper motivation. They tried to do something with Tanisha but that element was kind of lost along the wayside. 

 

Luis Lopez

Not bad but far from good. As a player, I never really understood what Luis wanted - the disadvantage of not being the main character in his own story. The Ballad of Gay Tony was not about Luis, it was about Tony. There were some interesting elements here: his relationship with his mother, Armando and Henrique and how they clashed with the lifestyle he built through working for Tony, unfortunately it never really amounts to anything and Luis ends in the same place he began: as Tony's errand boy, eventually replaced by the nameless, voice player character in GTAO, which brings us to...

 

Claude Speed

Much like Claude, I have nothing to say. 

 

Victor Vance

These last two are interchangeable for the spot of worst protagonist. I picked Vic as the second worst because I liked VCS slightly more than LCS. This guy never wanted to do anything he did, yet did it complaining. He dealt drugs, murdered folk and built a city-spanning empire that collapses within two years. He did it all for his brother (not Lance, the other one) who apparently has asthma. 

 

Toni Cipriani 

All the negatives I had about Luis go doubly for Toni. The main character of Liberty City Stories is Salvatore, yet instead we get stuck playing as some homicidal psycho who is the way he is for no reason other than he is that way. He is white anger personified, and I do not mean that as any form of compliment. This game should have been set in the late 70's where we play as a young Sal. 

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@Dick Justice

One of the rare long opinions where I agree with more or less everything said. Especially like your descriptions of Michael and Johnny. 

 

1 hour ago, Dick Justice said:

This game should have been set in the late 70's where we play as a young Sal. 

I have felt before that an alternate version of LCS could have possibly been about Tommy working for the Forellis in the early 70s, from his journey to a made man culminating in the Harwood Massacre. Sure R* would have to reuse a protagonist but I guess I just really like Tommy so I wouldn't mind it personally lol. 

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Ahmedmfroezspeed

i don't understand why people put Tommy in the top and Toni in the bottom

they're literally the same -almost-

they have the same height (6"3)

they both can't swim

they both can't climb

they both have the same amount of weapons

both are psychopaths

and so on...

but the difference here is that Tommy is overtrusting (naive) and Toni has trust issues

that's a point that makes Toni better than Tommy

and Tommy ain't sadistic like Toni

another thing that makes Toni better as well

plus, Toni is way more brutal than Tommy

i always liked brutal protagonists

they make me feel like i'm playing with Michael Myers/Jason Voorhees/ Leatherface

5 hours ago, Utopianthumbs said:

@Dick Justice

One of the rare long opinions where I agree with more or less everything said. Especially like your descriptions of Michael and Johnny. 

 

I have felt before that an alternate version of LCS could have possibly been about Tommy working for the Forellis in the early 70s, from his journey to a made man culminating in the Harwood Massacre. Sure R* would have to reuse a protagonist but I guess I just really like Tommy so I wouldn't mind it personally lol. 

you forgot about the problem between R* games and Ray Liotta ?

Tommy will never appear again

if the problem with Ray Liotta is still going

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MyNameIsNotImportantBro
1 minute ago, Ahmedmfroezspeed said:

i don't understand why people put Tommy in the top and Toni in the bottom

Tommy done thing that Toni couldn't do it, Toni is just following the orders from Salvatore Loene

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Ahmedmfroezspeed
1 minute ago, OmarMohammed said:

Tommy done thing that Toni couldn't do it, Toni is just following the orders from Salvatore Loene

that's okay for me...

wait a sec...

did you all underrate Toni for that reason ?

plus, the same thing would happen to Tommy if Sonny didn't betray him and send these 11 goons to kill Thomas

he would be Sonny Forelli's lapdog -no offense-

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MyNameIsNotImportantBro
2 minutes ago, Ahmedmfroezspeed said:

did you all underrate Toni for that reason ?

People have different opinions 

4 minutes ago, Ahmedmfroezspeed said:

plus, the same thing would happen to Tommy if Sonny didn't betray him and send these 11 goons to kill Thomas

he would be Sonny Forelli's

Sonny was a prick

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57 minutes ago, Ahmedmfroezspeed said:

don't understand why people put Tommy in the top and Toni in the bottom

Don't worry about it too much, I can somewhat understand how it feels to like something that others don't,using GTA as an example I liked HD Los Santos even though most think it's not that impressive particularly when compared to Liberty City, but in a sense it's a cool feeling to be in the minority sometimes, makes you feel like your taste could be unique, know what I mean?(though that may not necessarily be the case lol). Similarly even if many don't like Toni, no need to let that affect you instead you could feel your taste is unique in liking him :)

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Ahmedmfroezspeed
28 minutes ago, Utopianthumbs said:

Don't worry about it too much, I can somewhat understand how it feels to like something that others don't,using GTA as an example I liked HD Los Santos even though most think it's not that impressive particularly when compared to Liberty City, but in a sense it's a cool feeling to be in the minority sometimes, makes you feel like your taste could be unique, know what I mean?(though that may not necessarily be the case lol). Similarly even if many don't like Toni, no need to let that affect you instead you could feel your taste is unique in liking him :)

to make matters even worse

99.99% of the people who underrate him never even read a single word about him in the wiki

play the game before judging it, idiots -no offense-

same thing with vic vance

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Ahmedmfroezspeed
On 4/6/2020 at 9:32 PM, OmarMohammed said:

You just don't like them, to me, Tommy is not overrated, that's why I like him, But he is not overrated like CJ or Niko, But do you think That CJ is underrated?

false

Tom ain't underrated

and ain't overrated too

he's just in the middle

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MyNameIsNotImportantBro
15 minutes ago, Ahmedmfroezspeed said:

false

Tom ain't underrated

and ain't overrated too

he's just in the middle

Btw, Nobody In the Middle East Knows Tommy Nor Toni

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Niobium

alright, i did some thinking and revised my list

 

1. johnny klebitz 😍😍😍 (he is a protagonist who has human traits like niko and vic. but unlike niko and vic, who aren't all that happy about doing criminal activity, johnny actually embraces the criminal lifestyle, which make him the most balanced GTA protagonist. he is loyal to his brothers, always helps the smaller guy in need, true to his principles. but he also embraces being an outlaw, and he is a real badass not to be messed with. brothers for life, lost forever)

 

2. niko bellic (most people love niko because he is a character with a troubled past, character depth, and lots of personality. i love him because of YELLOW CAR!!!!

 

most people consider him to be the best protagonist. i totally think it is valid, it's just that i think that johnny is underrated and ranks higher than niko, just by a little bit 😛)

 

3. vic vance (i will always admire the fact that victor is rockstar's first human protagonist in the GTA series)

 

4. tommy vercetti (he is a real badass not to be messed with, and i don't believe i have ever seen this guy show any remorse for killing anyone. i believe this character is the face of GTA. he is the protagonist who symbolizes the player's psychopathy the most, not f*cking trevor.)

 

5. luis lopez (he is loyal to gay tony, his mom, and his two childhood friends, which is an admirable trait. he may be the weakest IV protagonist, but he is still light years better than the weakest V protagonist. i also liked when he told billy grey to f*ck off. it's luis mane)

 

6. michael de santa (while i don't enjoy the story that he is in with the goofy family guy stuff, the FIB bitchwork, and yelling at trevor all the time, i still kind of like him. oddly enough, he is more fun to cause chaos in free roam than trevor. i wish he was the only protagonist of V, because the other two are weak characters. they should've just had him focus on pursuing the almighty dollar, like the game was advertised to be)

 

7. toni cipriani (i used to think that he was a submissive character, but i can't tell if he is submissive because he is a bitch, or if he is merely submissive out of tolerance. at least he still has his moments, like when he stands up to vincenzo, someone who should have been the main antagonist of the game. while i do think tommy is better, at least toni feels more like a mobster than tommy)

 

8. carl johnson (very inconsistent character who flip flops between ruthless and coward, but at least in the end, he is loyal to his homies which is an admirable trait)

 

9. franklin clinton (not that interesting of a character tbh. some protagonists lacked character development but made up for it in charisma, but franklin doesn't really have either for me. he would have been better off as a supporting character maybe, as michael's pupil.)

 

10. claude (poor man's niko bellic. rockstar seemed to be more concerned with developing the characters and world around claude, and just making claude an avatar of the player. but claude's character hasn't aged well unlike tommy vercetti, a character who is actually voiced, or at least shows some personality.)

 

11. trevor phillips 🤮🤮🤮 (the most inconsistent, annoying, insufferable character rockstar has ever made. people only adore him because he's sometimes funny and has a talented voice actor. it's not that those are bad reasons to like trevor, the problem is that those are the only valid reasons to like trevor. i admire steven ogg, but at the end of the day, trevor is a petulant child, and a holier-than-thou hypocrite. EURRRRRRGH MIKAAAAAAAL)

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iiCriminnaaL
11 minutes ago, Niobium said:

1. johnny klebitz 😍😍😍 (he is a protagonist who has human traits like niko and vic. but unlike niko and vic, who aren't all that happy about doing criminal activity, johnny actually embraces the criminal lifestyle, which make him the most balanced GTA protagonist. he is loyal to his brothers, always helps the smaller guy in need, true to his principles. but he also embraces being an outlaw, and he is a real badass not to be messed with. brothers for life, lost forever)

 

3. vic vance (i will always admire the fact that victor is rockstar's first human protagonist in the GTA series)

 

4. tommy vercetti (he is a real badass not to be messed with, and i don't believe i have ever seen this guy show any remorse for killing anyone. i believe this character is the face of GTA. he is the protagonist who symbolizes the player's psychopathy the most, not f*cking trevor.)

Sometimes, Johnny feels like an outlaw biker hybrid of Vic and Tommy in some ways.

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Ahmedmfroezspeed
27 minutes ago, Niobium said:

 

1. johnny klebitz 😍😍😍 (he is a protagonist who has human traits like niko and vic. but unlike niko and vic, who aren't all that happy about doing criminal activity, johnny actually embraces the criminal lifestyle, which make him the most balanced GTA protagonist. he is loyal to his brothers, always helps the smaller guy in need, true to his principles. but he also embraces being an outlaw, and he is a real badass not to be messed with. brothers for life, lost forever)

 

2. niko bellic (most people love niko because he is a character with a troubled past, character depth, and lots of personality. i love him because of YELLOW CAR!!!!

 

4. tommy vercetti (he is a real badass not to be messed with, and i don't believe i have ever seen this guy show any remorse for killing anyone. i believe this character is the face of GTA. he is the protagonist who symbolizes the player's psychopathy the most, not f*cking trevor.)

 

7. toni cipriani (i used to think that he was a submissive character, but i can't tell if he is submissive because he is a bitch, or if he is merely submissive out of tolerance. at least he still has his moments, like when he stands up to vincenzo, someone who should have been the main antagonist of the game. while i do think tommy is better, at least toni feels more like a mobster than tommy)

 

8. carl johnson (very inconsistent character who flip flops between ruthless and coward, but at least in the end, he is loyal to his homies which is an admirable trait)

 

9. franklin clinton (not that interesting of a character tbh. some protagonists lacked character development but made up for it in charisma, but franklin doesn't really have either for me. he would have been better off as a supporting character maybe, as michael's pupil.)

glad this list doesn't have niko bellic as #1

at least you put Toni higher than CJ here

something i always like to see

but i wonder why CJ is higher than Franklin

Franklin is HELL more better of a protagonist than CJ

and 1 thing i don't get, again is Tommy in the Top and Toni in the middle -at least not in the bottom-

but nvm

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