Russian characters in computer games

The image of Russians in computer games made by foreign developers primarily involves the use of certain clichés, not always close to the reality. RIR looks at the most memorable computer games with Russian characters.

Red Alert

Let us recall the distant year 1996, which saw the release of the Red Alert strategy, which later became a classic amongst computer games. In the story, Albert Einstein invented a time machine shortly after the war and the first thing he did was go back in time to kill Hitler before he came to power. The scientist’s good intentions ended up with the Soviet Union, led by Joseph Stalin becoming the aggressor, instead of Germany. Europe and the United States joined in the fight against the "red menace.”

The Soviet Union’s Super weapon was, of course, the nuclear bomb. By the way, in the later parts of the game a bad dream of an American communism hater comes true with armored combat bears.

Selected quotes: “Take him out and shoot him!”

Grand Theft Auto

When talking about Russians in computer games one cannot forget to mention the mafia, clearly expressed in the popular game GTA. The second part of the game pleased all Russian gamers by the opportunity to “work” for the Russian mafia, whose symbol was a red star. They appear in the third district. Their specialty is contract killing and arms sales. Their car, Bulwark is the strongest in the game (it can withstand a direct hit from a grenade launcher, as well as an explosion of a hand grenade and the Molotov Cocktai). The color of the gang is red, of course.

Selected quotes:  “You want capitalism? You've got capitalism!”

Street Fighter

Of course, western games in which the Soviet Union is the “Empire of Good,” are impossible to find, but good characters are quite common.

One of the first good characters on the screen is the character of the legendary 1991 release Street Fighter. Zangiev, a huge Siberian nicknamed the "Red Cyclone”, was a Soviet soldier, who according to the legend perfected his skills on polar bears. The prototype of the character was Viktor Zangiev (born in May 26, 1962), a Soviet freestyle wrestler, European champion and world youth champion, six-time champion of the RSFSR, winner of the USSR championships, master of sports of USSR of international class in freestyle wrestling.

Selected quotes:  “Mr. President, you dance very well!”

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 and Half Life 2

The most popular names of Soviet and Russian characters are Ivan and Victor. The surnames well remembered by the West, became Romanov and Rasputin (after Stalin, of course).  

Here, for example, is the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union Aleksandr Romanov in Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2, which, under the influence of his adviser, Yuri, forms the World Socialist Alliance. After that, according to the plot, the Soviet Union declared war on the United States.

Or father Gregory, one of the characters in Half Life 2: the priest who reads prayers to ferocious zombies, forgives them and sends them to the purgatory with his shotgun, “Annabelle.” The image of a character called the “mad monk,” suggests the 1996 film “Rasputin – the mad monk.”

Selected quote:  “I pray do never turn away thy light, give heed to me, and spring thy traps upon mine enemies, when I cry out to thee!”

Call of Duty

For the first time the Russian character in this cult game appears in the mission called Vendetta (Call of Duty: World at War) as a sniper, and his name is Victor Reznov – a Soviet Red Army commander. An honest, patriotic soldier, he committed many heroic deeds according to the plot. In fighting, he often showed an incredible cruelty, killing German soldiers whom he hated ferociously by calling them rats, dirty animals, to whom he showed no mercy, or to any of the Wehrmacht soldiers, as many of his comrades were executed during the siege of Stalingrad.

Selected quotes:  “My father was a musician in Stalingrad. During the German occupation, his violin gladdened the hearts hundreds of people by Korsakov’s, Stasov’s and our other great composers’ music. The Nazis cut his throat while he was asleep.”

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