OPERATION MADNESS: RPG Villain Tournament—Round 1

Friday, March 21st, 2014

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NOTE: Polls for the first round are now closed.

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Sakaguchi Bracket Toriyama Bracket Uematsu Bracket Itoi Bracket

oprainfall Logo | RPG Villain Tournament

Well, ’tis the season for tournaments dealing with 64 of…something. The Air Force has one for Best Marches, Nintendo World Report has one for Best Video Games on Nintendo systems, and, of course, there’s that little basketball tournament that’s happening right now.

But we’ve got something that I’m sure will entice the whole lot of you. Today, we present to you the first-ever Operation Madness. This year, we celebrate some of the best villains to have appeared in RPGs.

The 64 villains involved were selected by the staff. We locked the entire staff in a small room at a hotel in Sri Lanka. Food and water had to be dropped in by the Air Force while we deliberated on who would make it into the tournament. The only contact we had with the outside world was a bouncer named Bubba, who not only kept us in our place but kept spies out.

…Or we just did a poll and took the 64 from there.

One thing to note—these are not necessarily the 64 villains who were highest-voted. A few who were outside the top 64 were included to provide a wider range of support to games. Pretty much every series that had a nominee in our poll is represented.

So, without further ado, we present to you…


opMADNESS 2014 Blank Bracket

OPERATION MADNESS: RPG Villain Tournament

The tournament bracket is divided into four groups. These groups are named Sakaguchi, Uematsu, Toriyama, and Itoi. We start off in the Sakaguchi bracket with the number-1 overall seed in the tournament…

Kekfa - Final Fantasy VI | oprainfall - RPG Villain Tournament

Kefka—Final Fantasy VI

Is it any surprise that Kefka would take the top seed? The guy is a madman who attacks anyone who gets in his way, including his own king. He will take on the 16th seed, GALAM from Cosmic Fantasy 2.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Kefka vs. GALAM

  • 1. Kefka - Final Fantasy VI (97%, 192 Votes)
  • 16. GALAM - Cosmic Fantasy 2 (4%, 8 Votes)

Total Voters: 198

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The winner of that game will go on to face the winner of the 8-9 match up. It will feature Devil Survivor‘s Naoya, the reincarnation of Cain. He will be up against a picture of honor and loyalty in the Black Knight himself, General Zelgius from the Tellius Fire Emblem games.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Naoya vs. General Zelgius

  • 9. General Zelgius - Fire Emblem (62%, 109 Votes)
  • 8. Naoya - Devil Survivor (38%, 67 Votes)

Total Voters: 175

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The 5th seed in the Sakaguchi bracket is Xehanort, the villain out of the Kingdom Hearts series. The man obsessed with Kingdom Hearts will go up against a man obsessed with beauty, Lysandre from Pokemon X & Y.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Xehanort vs. Lysandre

  • 5. Xehanort - Kingdom Heart (77%, 146 Votes)
  • 12. Lysandre - Pokemon X & Y (23%, 43 Votes)

Total Voters: 189

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The 4th seed is Ghaleon from Lunar: Silver Star Story. The Magic Emperor will be up against Dark Falz, the recurring villain of the Phantasy Star franchise.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Ghaleon vs. Dark Falz

  • 4. Ghaleon - Lunar: Silver Star Story (67%, 105 Votes)
  • 13. Dark Falz - Phantasy Star (33%, 51 Votes)

Total Voters: 156

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Smithy from Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars is the 6th seed. The evil blacksmith will find himself caught in some muck as he faces off against the always disgusting Master Belch from EarthBound.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Smithy vs. Master Belch

  • 6. Smithy - Super Mario RPG (52%, 92 Votes)
  • 11. Master Belch - EarthBound (48%, 85 Votes)

Total Voters: 177

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The 3rd seed, out of Xenoblade Chronicles, is the mighty Zanza. The one-time scientist turned god will be wielding his Monado against the disturbing Nene from Blue Dragon.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Zanza vs. Nene

  • 3. Zanza - Xenoblade Chronicles (90%, 175 Votes)
  • 14. Nene - Blue Dragon (10%, 19 Votes)

Total Voters: 194

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Skeith, the Terror of Death, from .hack is the 7th seed. He will have his hands full with Ozzie, one of Magus’s three generals from Chrono Trigger.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Skeith vs. Ozzie

  • 10. Ozzie - Chrono Trigger (73%, 137 Votes)
  • 7. Skeith - .hack (27%, 51 Votes)

Total Voters: 188

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The number-2 seed, out of Secret of Mana, is the evil Thanatos. The sorcerer will face off against CFW Trick, the incarnation of our gaming frustrations from Hyperdimension Neptunia Mk2.

RPG Villain Tournament - Round 1: Thanatos vs. Trick

  • 2. Thanatos - Secret of Mana (80%, 129 Votes)
  • 15. Trick - Hyperdimension Neptunia Mk2 (20%, 33 Votes)

Total Voters: 162

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That’s the way it is in the Sakaguchi group. But we still have three more to go.

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Sakaguchi Bracket Toriyama Bracket Uematsu Bracket Itoi Bracket

About Jeff Neuenschwander

Jeff has been a supporter of the website and campaign since the beginning. Joining in for E3 2012, he worked his way up the ranks quickly, making it to the Editing Manager post at the beginning of 2013. Jeff has a wide variety of tastes when it comes to gaming and pretty much likes anything that is quirky, although his favorite genres are Action, Platforming, and RPG. Outside of gaming, Jeff is a musician, being trained as a trombonist for Jazz and Classical music, and holds a degree in Sound Recording.


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  • RagunaXL

    props for Cosmic Fantasy 2, Phantasy Star, and Lunar being represented! will zanza face-off against kefka? I can’t wait!

    • Steve Baltimore

      Cosmic Fantasy 2 was one of my favorite RPGs of that era. It’s a shame more people didn’t get to play it.

    • You can thank me and Randy for Ghaleon/Zophar. 🙂

  • Thanatos2k

    Go, Thanatos! For obvious reasons.

    • multibottler0cket

      DDYYLLUUCCKK!! NNOOOOOOO!!

    • Thanatos2k

      Dyluck deserved it.

    • multibottler0cket

      Not even, he was just minding his own business!

      Haha but no, Thanatos rules.

  • Vallen

    I bet half the people don’t even realize that Ovan is Tri-Edge and not Azure Kite

  • buffs

    what about ramses from xenogears?

    • Jeff Neuenschwander

      They lost their conference tournaments and couldn’t find enough favor for an at-large bid.

      Unfortunately, neither was nominated for the tournament. I could only work with what I had and those two didn’t appear.

  • Matt B

    What about Seymour Guado?

  • multibottler0cket

    TTHHAANNAATTOOSS!!

  • multibottler0cket

    There is NO way Ultros is cooler than Necro-motherfucking-saro! What the frig!

    At least Rubicante is beating that noob Dickson.

  • multibottler0cket

    Is it bad that I voted for Zophar because of my childhood memories of zophar.net?

  • multibottler0cket

    Sorry for spamming, I thought these were separate articles :/ Soo… One comment per bracket… Oops.

    Felix is basically a protagonist though! Ladja is too evil, that scene makes me so sad when he puts his scythe to your neck…

    And Golbez… I have an inside joke at work with one of my coworkers where the Golbez music comes when one of the bosses catches us slacking off (a hypothetical situation, of course 😉 ).

  • Alexis Goitia

    Nintendo games taking home the gold.

  • Eric

    Ultros vs. Psaro is a cruel match-up. Both deserve to go far.

  • thisguyrighthere

    Come on, poor Zio never had a chance. 🙁