Read our arguments as to why our choices are the greatest fashionistas in gaming history, and, if you’re a Patreon supporter at the $5+ level, vote in our poll to determine which character will be the subject of a Patreon-exclusive art piece! If you support at the $10+ level, you can nominate your own fashion icon to join the fray. And if you don’t support us on Patreon, you simply get to enjoy the height of sartorial insight from us, your favorite game critics.
Morrigan (Dragon Age)
Literally every outfit Morrigan wears throughout the Dragon Age series is gorgeous. I, personally, would not wear a draped cowl over a bikini top, but I respect her for doing so. I especially respect her because she is dressed so sexy and yet remains mean. Her outfit tends to communicate “sexy and fun” a la Rikku, but in fact she is very mean and must be won over. Good for her.
— Melissa Brinks
Lulu (Final Fantasy X)
Lulu may have already won our Witch Moms showdown, but she also deserves a fashion award for making belts look better than they’ve ever looked before.
Tali’Zorah nar Rayya (Mass Effect)
Tali’s iconic envirosuit is both beautiful and functional. In addition to being sleek and stylish, the suit protects Tali’s fragile quarian immune system from contaminants, monitors her health, and protects her from the absence of breathable air. The suit can be upgraded with apps like her omni-tool (as well as quality of life enhancers like Nerve-Stim Pro). But what makes Tali a fashion icon is not the equipment she wears, but the way she wears them. Revealing no more than a glimmer of glowing eyes behind her face shield and hood, Tali won over a legion of Shepherds (and perhaps even a legion of Legions, depending on how you play).
— Sara Davis
Blue (Conway’s dog) (Kentucky Route Zero)
Originally I was going to pick Junebug and Johnny for this entry and they absolutely deserve a shout out here; they both bring rockabilly nonbinary android realness to Kentucky Route Zero, and Junebug’s dress change at the Lower Depths tavern is unforgettable. But the ultimate fashion icon here is Conway’s dog, who has no fixed name, but we’ll call her Blue because that’s the only correct name to choose if you choose a name for her. Blue wears a floppy, ragged straw hat that covers her eyes and perfectly suits her slow and determined gait. Blue’s style is wise, tired, and a little mysterious; like her hat, she’s seen it all, but she hangs in there for the sake of Conway and their friends. Maybe we can’t change the world, but we can move through each struggle with Blue and her iconic hat by our side.
— Zainabb Hull
Zoë Castillo (Dreamfall: The Longest Journey)
Sure, we now know how unlikely it is that the spaghetti straps and low-rise jeans of the early aughts will endure into the 23rd century, when Zoë is living in the corporatocracy of the future. You’ll have to trust me that when this game dropped in 2006, she looked comfortable and effortlessly chic—and even though she swaps her mall fashion look for a big drapey cowl and cardigan in her sequel The Dreamfall Chapters, it’s still my first impression of Zoë that comes to mind when I think of video game characters I’ve wanted to be.
First and foremost, Stella looks 100 percent comfy all the time, which is also my fashion preference. I, too, am a sucker for soft fabrics in pastels and mustard yellow. Stella also knows the importance of a signature item, hence her nickname of “Big Hat.” While the hat is a bit much for me, I’m a sucker for the color combinations and what I imagine to be very soft fabric of her outfits. Getting the ability to mix and match her clothes was extremely exciting for me.
Goro Akechi (Persona 5 Royal)
(Note: to discuss our Second Coming of the Detective Prince properly, there are spoilers for the game.) Who can extol the virtues of Goro Akechi’s wardrobe? I can. Consider the way the truth of his past/current occupation is hinted in his Detective Prince outfit, particularly in the nod to Loki’s stripes in his tie; the casual yet tidy appearance of his jacket; and, of course, the A on his briefcase, just in case we forget just who we’re talking about (and yes, the briefcase is part of the outfit). Then, consider how he hides behind his grandpa clothes with that argyle sweater vest. And who can forget the true show of the Detective Prince that is his first Metaverse outfit? A marching band uniform—nay! A prince with tassels, in red and gold, ready to defend his (unholy) kingdom! (Although we were definitely deprived of the grey version of this outfit.) And his Black Mask outfit, a kinky bodysuit of all Goroboys’ dreams? Perfection; look at those buckles, the knight’s helmet that is his mask. But truly, the beauty in this man’s sense of fashion comes in two key places, so important that there are two variations: his two dance outfits, and his third semester casual plus coat. For the latter, the coloring, simplicity, and elegance in both sets of outfits says it all, particularly when lying next to his boyfriend in the opening animation (fight me; look at that smile, look at this canonical art, they are in love!!). For the first of the former, it screams “teen boy idol,” the fate he basically had, and the second, meant for the P5 dancing game but too marvelous to actually include in the game itself? Crow’s finest hour.
(Bonus: Mangaka Rokuro Saito graced us with Goro in this jacket/turtleneck ensemble. Truly, we are blessed.)
— Naseem Jamnia
Ignis (Final Fantasy XV)
Despite every danger that comes his way on the greatest boyband road trip ever, he still has the audacity to wear a suit.
— Elvie Mae Parian
Sayge (Breath of the Wild)
Sayge is a man who unapologetically struts his personal style with a confidence that screams Hyrule Fashion Week. From his vibrant red hair to his blue bandana to his rock-solid bare chest under his rope-tied smock—just. look at him. And, he’s a designer. He helps all of the people of Hateno Village and beyond bring flair to their lives for an unbelievably good price. Twenty rupees? Five apples? Baby, for just that and the clothes off your back, he’ll whip you up the meanest red armor set anyone’s ever seen. And the boy don’t judge—he won’t even blink if you show up wearing Gerudo vai armor. Sayge knows, as we do, that gendered fashion is a tool of oppression used by the corporate elite to keep the gays down. TL;DR: Sayge is the greatest queer fashion icon Hyrule has ever known, and no, Tim Gunn, I won’t hear a word otherwise.
— Emily Durham
Protagonist/Joker (Persona 5 Royal)
While I could elaborate on the wardrobes of basically any character in this game, particularly Yusuke’s New Year’s Eve scarf, Ryuji’s winter outfit (ahem), or truly, any of the other third semester outfits or dance outfits, I would be remiss to not talk about our protagonist. Putting aside his school uniform, which is not by choice, our dear Akiren, like his boyfriend (again: fight me), has marvelous coloring, simplicity, and elegance in his summer and winter semester outfits, hiding behind his glasses/mask to soften his appearance and hide his hotness. But consider where he truly shines: his Metaverse outfit. His internal model of a rebel. A (likely) sleeveless grey shirt, slacks stuffed into quite-heeled boots, a flash of red, and that coat! I know I feel sexy AF when I wear it, and we all know Joker’s flair for the dramatic had to manifest somehow.
And, of course, punishment cop.
Hades is full of impeccably outfitted characters, but Persephone’s cozy cottagecore dress is a dreamy reminder of spring at any time of the year. And, it hits the single most important requirement for a dress: it has pockets!
— December Cuccaro
Goro Majima (Yakuza)
Just look at him. He absolutely does not care. Flex.
Melissa Brinks is Sidequest’s editor in chief, co-creator of the Fake Geek Girls podcast, author of The Compendium of Magical Beasts, and an aspiring beekeeper. She once won an argument on the internet, and tweets at @MelissaBrinks.