I know I’m running a risk here. Probably 70% of you are so tired of the “What are those?” Vine meme you just came here to flame me, and another 25% live under a rock of cultural deflection and have no idea what I’m talking about. So there are likely only 5% of you that will actually enjoy this article. But I couldn’t help it, it had to be made. Someone is literally holding a gun to my head at this very moment. Please, call 911 or the emergency number of your locality.
(Do not do that — Don Q. Copper, IndieRuckus’s overworked liability lawyer)
1) Duke Nukem’s Sandals
The alpha bro of the gaming world naturally only wears the most masculine shoes available—his “Mighty Boot”—which is ubiquitous throughout the franchise as his close-range attack. He has stated himself that he wears an impressive size 13, although I might argue that by relinquishing such information Duke is likely trying to make up for some kind of hidden shortcoming of his. Hmmm. However, Duke decided to ditch the clunky toughguy boots for some questionably un-manly sandals while kicking his way through paradise in the vacation-themed expansion Duke Caribbean: Life’s a Beach.
2) Wario & Waluigi
Whether these two are brothers, lovers or just very close friends still remains to be seen, but either way these two cranky Italians sure are into matching each other’s style. Their clogs not only look uncomfortable, but also beg the question “Why?”. I’d be more willing to accept the idea of this disgusting duo tying a garbage bag around each foot and calling it a day rather than seeking out traditional Dutch footwear for clomping around the tennis court.
Duke Nukem tries to brag about his moderately-larger-than-average foot size in compensation for his tiny ween, but Sora from Kingdom Hearts on the other hand puts the entire NBA roster to shame with his colossal kicks. And need I have to mention how hideous they are all around—from the gaudy color, to the straps that are thicker than his legs, to the bizarre angle they sport at the tip? And it just begs the question: do you think he stuffs them?
Say what you want about the way Bayonetta portrays women, but the way she portrays functioning footwear is plum awful. I mean sure, the idea of shooting guns from your feet is pretty nifty, but how is she firing them? Oh, because she’s a witch? Well I’m sorry, but I expect my games about naked witches with weaponized hair who ice-skate their way through a biblical martial arts music video to be a bit more realistic than that.*
*I ripped this line off from Jaydles on Stack Exchange Gaming here.
5) Sonic the Hedgehog (uh, duh)
So sorry Sammy Classic Sonic Fan, but ol’ blue boy is simply the king of eye-gouging footwear, and everyone knows it. But although some entries in his wayward franchise of games have him in the relatively simple red-and-white sneakers, others like Sonic Adventure 2 dropped him in a pair of shoes that look like they were made out of McDonald’s upholstery.
Dishonorable Mention: every other goddamn Sonic character
I’m sure I missed a hundred other horrendous pairs of shoes featured in games. Let me know of any you can think of in the comments.