Hello everybody and welcome back to ChrisX’s… Top 20 Video Game Ice Masters. Well I don’t think I have much other to say than what I said for early parts in the beginning, so let’s jump right into the cream of the crop when it comes to cryokinesis in video games.
I spoke quite a lot about Brigandine, didn’t I? Well, what can I say, this game is not just nostalgic, it’s actually a pretty sweet strategy RPG with medieval setting. Anyway, most of the time, ice masters are mostly limited to the magician classes when it comes to Forsena. But it is mostly on any other normal, generic classes, and it’s only the female ones like Sorceress or Witch that will learn the ultimate ice spell Fall Berg. None of them are in this list, however.
Now, when you begin a game, you’ll always select a country first. To the northernmost of Forsena is the kingdom of Norgard, a country surrounded with snowy mountains. It’s a cold, harsh region, but produces some of the stronger knights, most of them flourishing under the leadership of the one who took this spot… the White Wolf of Norgard, Vaynard.
Before his rise as a king, Vaynard was the right hand man of the previous king of Norgard, Doremiditt. After the latter’s death during the battle against Almekia’s King Henguist, due to Norgard law of ‘only men can take Norgard throne’, he took the throne despite Doremiditt having a daughter, and Vaynard’s first order as a king is to make a cease-fire with Almekia, but in truth, he just needed the time to regroup and then resume Norgard’s quest to conquer the land under their rule. And the golden chance comes during the rebellion of Zemeckis and the creation of Esgares Empire.
You know, if I have to pick a favorite in this game, it’s definitely Vaynard. This guy just oozes cool in lots of things he does. He’s ambitious, he’s got his eye on conquest and ruling and pursuing it ruthlessly, but even he shows human emotions at times, he’s got a big sister he worries about, he develops strategies (in conjunction of his friend Guinglain), and also somehow put a great care on his subordinates, even if one gets a bit too hotheaded, teaching them lessons like overly depending on pride will result death. He’d make one of those great warlords, balancing between compassion and ruthlessness.
Now let me get this straight. For the most part, Vaynard is more than content with hacking people away with his halberd the Caladbolg. His usage of ice is quite limited, it’s just casting a normal Frost spell or a Geno-Frost, an area freeze spell that encased all enemies caught within with ice. How do you think he ranked this high in ice, while he just got Honorable Mentions in Spear Experts? All right… First of all, Brigandine assigned elements within characters. Ice spells or watery creatures like Hydras or Lizard Men are designated with blue element. Vaynard from start to finish comes with two blue elements. So, Vaynard actually has the distinction of the most powerful and accurate blue-elemental fighters that slashes people with his halberd just as effectively he casts a freezing spell, also being more proficient in hitting red-elemental units. I can bet that if this game has a hack and slash spin-off, Vaynard could be creating icebergs out of nowhere with the swing of his halberd.
In addition to this, while he might have just lower level ice spells, he can use it creatively and most effectively. This is shown when he actually used his halberd and his own body as a conduit to freeze both himself and a frickin’ Death Knight like Cador, enabling him to get shot in the eye (video below). So… yeah, there’s the other thing, what Vaynard lacked in high level spells… he just made it up with creativity and smart usage of his ice for great results.
Take all of the above and then notice that he’s basically a king in a snowy kingdom, the only place to even snow in Forsena, and when it comes to war, he displays a cold, efficient persona that is ruthless in executing his plan to conquer the continent… his personality fits that of a cold, calculating ice user. Therefore, yeah, Vaynard looks more like an ice master than a spear expert to me, he ranks as the #10 Top Video Game Ice Experts.
… Though he might have a better standing if it’s about ‘warlords’/’conquerors’. Well, speaking of that…
Well speaking of warlords, there’s practically tons of them amongst the figures of the Sengoku Period… Wait, what? No, I’m not going to pick someone else from Samurai Warriors, I’m not gonna break that rule. Besides, Takatora alone carries on the ‘ice user’ well enough in that series. However, he wouldn’t be the first of the ‘video game Sengoku Period action game’ that would be using the ice element as near-flawless as possible.
Capcom really goes along with the rumor that Kenshin could have been a woman, and so gave Kenshin one of the most androgynous appearances, which goes along with his ice cold personality. Not to trigger the LGBT community, but I just think that despite his androgyny, he’s at least straight, considering he keeps around his extremely full of fanservice kunoichi aide Kasuga and constantly praises her. Kenshin is one of the mightiest warlords that vied for supremacy in the Sengoku Period and rival of the tactical genius Takeda Shingen. A devout Buddhist, if you can’t tell from his monk-like armor, he believes himself as the incarnation of the God of War Bishamonten, and his battle prowess does make him live up to the hype heaped to him, considering that he’s known to finish battles on his favor in a flash, favoring precise strategies. But beneath his cold and aloof front, he’s also a man who values honor and prefers fighting fair and square.
But that doesn’t mean that he’s just a backline commander, though. Kenshin not only has mastery over the element of ice, considering every of his slashes can freeze the enemy right on track, but he’s also blessed with the speed of Gods. He moves extremely quick and draws the sword from his sheath in great speed for either multiple slashes or one powerful slash, which again, freezes the enemy on contact. And that great speed isn’t just about how he draws his sword, he also moves quickly like a snowstorm… hey I never said a storm like that is slow like molasses. Add all these and he can also unleash ice geysers or generates ice storm whenever he feels like it, and each enemies frozen with this storm gets slashed repeatedly with his ice cold blade… One gets the feeling that facing Kenshin is like facing an extreme blizzard right in the face.
And it might be just for awhile, but at the very least, in the third game, the map where Kenshin is fought, Kawanakajima, is usually covered with snow. And with his army wearing mostly white, it worked quite well for ambushes, even if they’re not ninjas themselves.
This is definitely a liberal interpretation of Uesugi Kenshin, but considering that he combines the art of iaijutsu and a much more dangerous usage of ice manipulation, I gotta admit that it makes a very badass warrior monk daimyo, and his sagely aura of wisdom also enhances the reason why he’s associated with the element of ice, that’s how he’s at #9 amongst Video Game Ice Masters.
All right. As someone who has played and followed the Persona series… There’s just no way I’m skipping out this series that utilizes the power of the elements as a power of their magic. Yes, I understand that by the time this article is written, Persona 5 has been released in Japan, and I’ve had my interest on Yusuke Kitagawa and his persona as a potential Ice Master… but I haven’t played that game to make judgment on him.
But even then, he’d have to compete to THE original heroic ice queen of the series from Persona 3, the Imperious Queen of Executions, Mitsuru Kirijo.
Amongst the cast of Persona 3, Mitsuru is one of the characters I highlighted the most. Maybe because I have a thing for more mature ladies, though by the time of that game, she’s still a high school girl. A student council president at that. Mitsuru is the head of SEES, combating the Shadows that appeared from the Tartarus tower because she felt like it’s her duty to clean up to her grandfather’s mistakes that caused the tower to rise. Born into wealth while very much not flaunting it, it made Mitsuru a little awkward when it comes to normal social life, in fact, if you want to form a social link to her, you have to be the ace of your class with high intelligence score to make her even notice you for potential social linking.
But in spite all those, Mitsuru is also a very nurturing lady to her juniors, worrying about the welfare of those under her and watching over their actions out of care. It’s only that her powers were better suited on the frontline that she eventually relented from that role to better protect her friends side by side. And in spite her unflappable demeanor, she broke down when she saw her father killed in front of her eyes, seemingly rendering all her efforts useless. But after one necessary slap in the face by Yukari Takeba, Mitsuru is back on her feet, with an evolved persona from Penthesilea into Artemisia, with renewed vigor and also a great gratitude on Yukari to stick with her, even if later on she’d make a disastrous decision. When you have the team matriarch to be in your debt, she’ll damn well give her support through good and bad times.
Considering Mitsuru’s usual smart and brilliant mind, she favors a fighting style that in her own words… ehem… C’est magnifique. Or ‘Brilliant’. That’s being a rapier for fencing. That didn’t get a very heavy usage in the original RPG since her main role is being the heavy mage, so that means you will depend on her Bufu spells to freeze your enemies dead on track or tanking whoever is throwing ice at her. It also helps that with Mind Charge around, she can deal an extremely devastating damage to those that crosses her path.
Come in the fighting game, she starts using her rapier even more often. Even so, she only has two normal moves, a lunging strike, or summoning an ice mirror that moves and freezes anything it touches. However, she has an incredible utility and range with the help of Artemisia, and most of its attacks have great range, allowing her to setup combos using her limited number of special moves and then setting up big combos. Of course, it also helps because a lot of her moves freezes the enemy in place.
A persona is the manifestation of one’s psyche and soul, and in the case of Mitsuru, hers manifest into a very deadly ice flinging and manipulating soul that crushes her enemies under her heel while also protecting those under her care. Mitsuru ranks not only up there as one of my favorites amongst the Persona 3 cast with her personality and ice expertise, but also as the #8 Top Video Game Ice Masters in my mind.
In Warcraft, one of the areas of note is the northern frozen wastes of Northrend, also home of the Undead Scourge. The extreme coldness of the area is a scary thought that none ever come back alive after making a journey there, for death awaits with its cold icy grasp, regardless if it’s one of these two major classes… Death Knights and Liches.
This is actually different than the normal mages that while having a good selection of ice magics, they also have other means of magic like Arcane, or even Fire. And this is why after much thinking, I ended up not choosing Jaina Proudmoore, even if she is pretty good in ice magic and is the representative ice mage in Heroes of the Storm and one of my favorites at that, when you can make an elemental made out of Water’s attack suddenly act like it’s ice cold… it’s no mean feat, but overall, she is an overall mage, not an ice expert. Also, nope, that radical shift in personality in World of Warcraft plays no factor of not being chosen at all. That’s another topic.
Instead the spot goes to… the Arch Lich of the Scourge, Kel’Thuzad.
In Azeroth, ice magic have a connotation of the coldness of death, that’s why liches don’t just take up necromancy, they also take up lessons in ice magic. If the title didn’t hint you in, then you’d know that Kel’Thuzad is the lich of the highest order… except the Lich King. And he does have the proper portfolio for that. Before he was a lich, Kel’thuzad was one of the greatest mages of Kirin Tor who got banished due to a hidden lust of power and practicing the forbidden art. His banishment led him to Northrend, where he became personally enthralled with the Lich King Ner’zhul and founded the Cult of the Damned to worship him as a necromancer. Kel’Thuzad’s actions caught the attention of the Human Prince Arthas, who killed him, but as fate would have it, Arthas became corrupted and became a Death Knight, and one of his first tasks is to resurrect Kel’Thuzad.
His resurrection came with a great boon, he’s no longer just a necromancer, he’s also becoming a Lich with unparalleled power. He held no ill will to Arthas and even became his most trusted aide, protecting him from many things including the betrayal of Sylvanas Windrunner, and eventually entrusted with the domain of his old kingdom at Lordaeron, residing in the dreaded Necropolis known as Naxxramas, ready to freeze the blood within the veins of unprepared interlopers.
You know there is no doubt that Kel’Thuzad is one evil mofo, but it’s also pretty admirable that he can be civil and calm most of the time. And surprisingly he’s also a pretty loyal friend, his friendship with Arthas can be said as quite exceptional and not something you’d expect from a world-ravaging Lich King. But try not to forget he’s a villain.
Ever since his early days in Warcraft 3, Kel’Thuzad has been the premiere Lich that probably most liches take after. And his spells are decked with a lot of ice things. Frost Nova sends a circular ice blast to damage an enemy in an area, where Frost Armor grants any ally extra chilling armor that can also slow down anyone attacking the protected unit at close range. And since it’s using auto cast, as long as he has enough mana, he can afflict the whole army with such armor. If he runs out of mana, he can sacrifice a few soldiers with Dark Ritual. The name might not sound like it’s ice-themed, but if you look at the icon… yeah, probably he kills the target by freezing them to death before claiming their essence. Unfortunately it seemed that his Ultimate, Death and Decay, has nothing to do with ice but instead shows his prominence as a master of dark magic.
Well, Kel’Thuzad fixes that when he’s included with the Defense of the Ancients: All Stars game as… Lich. He carries all his icy skills before, and since fodder units don’t cost money, he can pull off Dark Ritual with impunity. But better yet, his ultimate gets replaced by something that brings even more icy death, Chain Frost. It’s like a more common chain lightning, a massive ice blast that jumps from enemy to enemy… And the damage is massive, that he can wipe out the whole team if they clump together. Of course, when Dota 2 arrives and copyright issues arise, Kel’Thuzad can no longer be the Lich of Dota 2, so in his place was a new identity, Ethreain. Honestly, he’s actually doing a damn good job filling in for Kel’thuzad.
And meanwhile, Kel’Thuzad reappears in Hearthstone as a Solo Adventure boss in the Curse of Naxxramas set, where he instead gets a little wackier than before, considering the light-hearted atmosphere there. But as you trek down the area, you’ll start noticing that the creatures you encounter is also enshrouded with ice… and before facing him, you’ll have to contend with the Frost Wyrm Sapphiron guarding Kel’Thuzad, who can freeze heroes and minions and kill the latter in instant if they’re frozen… And after that one tough battle… Kel’Thuzad faces yourself… with witty banter, huge minions and devastating spells (Good luck…). While it might not be as much, his Heroic Power is a 0-cost Frost Blast, constantly freezing your hero and dealing damage for free. And once his armor was whittled down, he will not just summon two Nerubians that looked like they just took ice bath, but he can temporarily gain control of your minions… or permanently if it’s Heroic Mode.
Kel’Thuzad might be balancing about both ice and darkness, but when it comes to ice, he looks a lot more fitting. I mean, he’s walking/floating around a freezing continent, and he still devastates a lot of people with his cold magic, not to mention that to reach him, you WILL have to contend to a lot of ice-based creatures or undead guarding him. And of course, personally speaking, I feel that his characterization didn’t get hit with a truck on demand (I’m looking at you, Jaina). All those things considered, this makes me declare Kel’Thuzad one of the best Ice Masters in Video Game history, ranking at #9.
And not to forget, one message for Blizzard: Get him to Heroes of the Storm!
I’ve mentioned Rimururu and Yuki as two of SNK’s finest characters when it comes to mastery over ice. However, years after their debut… SNK would release one character that I think surpasses them in terms of being a master of ice.
Well I guess you know her already, it’s like no countdown about cryomancers would skip out this character. I’m talking about the King of Fighters’ Kula Diamond.
Debuting at King of Fighters 2000, Kula was made as an anti-K’ weapon to eliminate traitors of the NESTS cartel. Since K’ was given the power of fire, Kula was given the power of ice through genetic modification. For the most part, Kula kept the cold hearted assassin persona, which was fabricated, but still allows her to execute her mission to eliminate whoever betrays the cartel. It took her quick enough to get in the way of K’, and they end up being rivals and following NESTS’ fall, Kula ended up being in K’ and his friends’ care, where her cold hearted assassin facade started to completely defrost…
Into a very bubbly and innocent little girl. SNK, I know I like Kula the way she is right now, but really? An innocent, cheerful personality? That might not fit the whole ‘cold and precise’ personality usually surrounding ice masters! But unlike others, there was a time where Kula’s personality actually fitted, when she was a cold hearted assassins that eliminates her target with great success rate. While I’m not gonna miss that, at least it’s something.
Well, not to worry, what she lacked in fitting personality (she has a big personality, yes, but might not fit the theme), she pretty much makes it up with how well she handles herself with ice. Let’s see, for normal attacks, she just… generates ice spikes in her hand so she can thrust it them to the enemy. Or alternatively, she froze her hair solid just so it can attack the enemy, before unfreezing it. She can also breathe ice to blow and freeze the enemy away, generate ice with the swing of her hand, which she then uses to either do a rising strike, or capture enemy projectile, turning it to her own ice projectile, then kick it back to the enemy. Also, yeah, notice that thing on her feet? Yep. Ice skates, which she can use for a spinning kick that looked like a ballerina spin, or even slide with the ground she just froze. And if you get too close, she’ll just encase you in a big ice block.
And then we go to her supers, in which she’s capable of creating devastating ice spikes, be it by planting her arms to the ground, or just ice-skates her way and ice spikes come out. While right now her ultimate super is no slouch either, being encasing her opponent with ice before shattering it, let’s remember that back in those days… her ultimate super move was bringing in a blizzard or aurora borealis into the battlefield, highly damaging anyone caught in it. Not only it’s satisfying to land and looking really beautiful (seriously check out the color effects at XIII), it’s also scoring a great, devastating damage. You do know that a severe blizzard is also capable of wrecking cities, right?
Her usage in manipulating ice to pretty much kick ass is so overwhelming that I may be able to look away from how her personality might not match that much with the usual cold and calculating style. She’s adorable enough as it is that it makes me want to give her either a lollipop or ice cream… or just lollipop-flavored ice cream. But it still gives me enough incentives to get her as a #6 amongst the top Video Game Ice Masters!
Picking someone from Dota 2 for this list is a tough choice, not just because it’s something that people rarely touched, usually sticking with League of Legends (I can’t blame you with its super toxic community and hard learning curve), but it’s for the fact that Dota 2 has no less than five or six ice masters. And some of them are even also on phenomenal cosmic level of OP lore-wise.
But power isn’t everything. And in the end, I decided to stick with the one I stuck with the most… Rylai, known as the Crystal Maiden.
Previously known as Rylai Crestfall, now her surname removed, Crystal Maiden has been around since the days of Dota Allstars. And her model was none other than the model of Jaina Proudmoore, like I mentioned before in Kel’Thuzad’s entry. Except that rather than diversifying between arcane spells like Jaina, Crystal Maiden specializes in purely ice magic. Her personality also shifts as well. Of course, on the other hand, she’s friendly, cheery and naive, but when it comes to battle and fighting to kill off other heroes opposing her, the Crystal Maiden is capable of focusing on the kill without mercy. Even if she’s mostly a Support, she’s also capable of untold destruction or setting up kills if she’s left alone.
Rylai’s abilities has blossomed since her childhood, where her naivete usually made her on the losing end with her more cunning sister Lina. Said ability happens to be the power to manipulate ice, but without control, it often went out of control and freezing regions, ruin crops, etc, causing her parents to move from places to places until eventually they decided to banish her into the frozen lands of Icewrack, where she felt more home than ever, learning from a wise Ice Wizard near the Blueheart Glacier and controlling her ice spells better. When the sage announced her ready to depart and went to a deep slumber, Rylai departed to show her skills amongst other heroes that was called by the Ancients… as well as settling the score with her sister.
Crystal Maiden is definitely that one support that is crucial in winning games.While she’s often relegated to just plant wards, if you let her loose in team fights, she’s capable of wreaking a much needed havoc with her ice magic. She can create an ice explosion with the Crystal Nova or encase an enemy with ice using the Frostbite. And they stick around for a good number of time, meaning that getting caught with that skill if she’s accompanied with her friends. Or if the enemy is chasing a friend, she can just freeze them right on track.
Now her Brilliance Aura might not look like it’s utilizing ice, but let’s take a look at the flavor text anyway:”Cold temperatures promote the essence of magic, causing Rylai’s presence to allow spell usage in abundance.”
Which means with Rylai around, she’s providing a rather cold temperature throughout the entire battlefield (it’s a global aura) in order to ensure her friends and herself receive a good amount of magic supply to help them cast more spells. Huh, that is actually a pretty good use of cold temperature that made ice… without making a visible one.
And there’s a reason why she’s one ice master you don’t want to leave alone unless you want her to wreck your team… her ultimate, Freezing Field. You know about how a lot of people here can freeze entire areas or call in blizzards? Well, Crystal Maiden does just that. If she starts calling for the Freezing Field, she turns a wide area into a field where it’s chilly and slowing down enemies and many ice blocks drop down from the sky devastating anyone caught in it. Many times. Yep, call it ‘Let It Go’ if you want, that sounds more like “Let It Rip” to her, where unless focused at or interrupted, it will cause untold havoc and dropping enemies dead.
While she’s far from super cold, the Crystal Maiden encourages brilliance in her play style, be it planting wards properly or utilizing her ice to either support and save her teammate or devastate her enemies. She may be just a human, but brimming with potential that if she could match up ancient monsters, some of them also using ice, it speaks of her untapped power and mastery of ice. Not only she’s my second most favorite Dota 2 hero ever (if you still watched my video), she’s also the #5 Top Video Game Ice Masters to me.
In video games or many stories we mostly see the main character using the power of Fire if they are the main protagonist. Well it seemed that way back in the PS1 era and I’m not sure how much it still holds. Regardless, for the most part, ice is mostly reserved for either ladies or rival characters, though I don’t mind the former. However, Tales series has enough balls to eventually a main protagonist that specializes in ice… and is totally a guy.
Probably you’ve not heard of him except if you meet him as a bonus boss in Tales of Graces f, because his game of origin really never left Japan. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the main hero of Tales of Rebirth, Veigue Lungberg.
Just the moment I look at this guy, I know he’s going to be a real good ice expert. Even better, he’s also a very adept swordsman. Sword, one of my favorite weapons, meets ice, my favorite element of all time. I couldn’t ask for a sweeter combination!
Veigue is at first just a normal man living in the village of Sulz until he’s 17 years old where due to certain events at the capital city of Balka caused him and some other humans (here called Huma) to develop special powers, his happens to be Force of Ice. Because he couldn’t control it at first, his childhood friend Claire got frozen along with the room he’s in. Times later, with the help of Eugene Gallardo and Mao, fellow Force users helped him out to free Claire, but then other nastier members of the Callegea Imperial Force came to abduct several beautiful girls and Claire happened to be the ‘lucky’ person. With that, Veigue resolved to rescue Claire… though he certainly did not expect facing up a lot of racism issues plaguing the world between Huma and Gajuma (Beast men, like Eugene) and then just when he thought he saved Claire, the racism issue escalated and his childhood friend might be in another castle… Ahem, I mean, body.
I’ll not spoil anymore. But regardless, while Veigue certainly has moments where he runs on hot blood (it’s his voice actor, best known for that kind of role), for the most part Veigue is silent and rather hard to approach. He’s not that much of a jerk, but he just likes to keep things to himself. So in other words… yep, he’s pretty cold and taciturn. But that doesn’t mean he’s uncaring, however. While his main focus is Claire, there are also a lot of moments where Veigue willingly lent his hands to the ones who need help due to racism issues. As someone who believes the equality between others… I approve.
Throughout the game, Veigue’s Force of Ice manifests outside battle by shooting out ice balls that can freeze the environment in order to advance forward, like maybe freezing a river. As seen in the first scene, whenever his Force went berserk, he’s capable of freezing his whole surrounding. But if he’s in control, which is most of the time, he’s capable of administering those freezing power into his big sword. While he attacks a bit slower, it deals a great number of damage, and his arte is executed quicker too in addition of having a chance to freeze his enemies temporarily. A lot of his arte, especially when combining them, also have ice properties. And then there’s his Mystic Artes. While most of them, due to the game’s system, require him to partner up with a friend, when he made solo appearances, he’s capable of doing so, including either covering the enemy with ice and then shattering them with one big slash, or even (with the help of a friend) summoning a Soul Calibur on ice! Okay, it’s not exactly the Soul Calibur, but still, Namco must’ve thought of that blade when they designed this thing called Celsius Calibur.
Though right now most people seems to think of him memetically to be not the cold and taciturn guy, but the guy who screams the name of “CLAAAAAIIIIRRREEE!!!” a lot… Actually I’m seeing beyond that meme, and he’s got the personality that befits most of ice masters while still cutting it as a main protagonist. In addition of that, he has a good control with his force power overall, enabling him to bring out a lot of powerful freezing attacks through his sword. I really have respects on Veigue and he remains as not just one of the top tier Tales characters to me, but also the #4 Top Video Game Ice Masters.
Sometimes, fan games can go very far and when someone in fan games rank this high, it’s actually a pretty good rank. Okay, so I mentioned fan game, and… I know what you’re thinking. This spot is to be taken by Touhou’s Cirno, right?
News flash. Not every fangames are Touhou.
Well, Touhou once made a Megaman-based spinoff called ‘Mega-Mari’, featuring Marisa Kirisame. There are, however, other games based on Megaman out here in the net. One of them is this underrated gem called Rosenkreuzstilette.
It’s like Megaman, except use an all-female cast that can have varying degree of Moe (Arcana Heart of Megaman?) It revolves around the adventure of the optimistic mage named Spiritia Rosenberg, as she tries to prevent a war between her group of magi against the world, and knocking some senses of her friends, while also uncovering a nefarious plot by someone she absolutely did not expect at all. For a Megaman clone, it was actually pretty good and the plot is also pretty simple, yet can get dark at times. Also the music is kickass, it has a rather gothic feel of awesome in it.
But we’re not here to speak about the video game overall. Well, Spiritia has a best friend who excels in ice magic, and she’s the one in this spot… her name is Freudia Neuwahl.
Yep, one look at her and you can already tell that she’s definitely that type of girl. Freudia is cold and a loner, having difficulties to open up with others, except with her childhood friend Spiritia. Having to grow up persecuted during childhood for being a magi like the rest of the cast since they were feared for their power, it became a basis for Freudia to go along with the plan of Graf Michael Sepperin to rebel against the imperial forces and create a world for Magi where everyone can live in harmony. Spiritia disagreed on this one and managed to knock some sense on Freudia, making her relent and eventually discover the nefarious plot behind Sepperin’s plan, saving Spiritia from it.
And it didn’t end there. The game proved popular enough to receive at least one sequel Rosenkreuzstilette Freudenschtadel, where Freudia is promoted into the main protagonist and goes on a quest when Spiritia was kidnapped by a branch of the Church Schwarzkreuz. As Freudia said it herself, she has something that she wants to protect, even from the hands of God. It’s clear that she truly valued her friendship with Spiritia and will go through hell and back while still keeping her cool persona in order to save those she endears. And if the antagonist just happens to have godlike power like a God themselves… To hell with them.
I’ll just say this. Freudia’s skills with ice is second to none. Her signature skill that Spiritia can gain, considering the Megaman-ish nature of the game and her abilities, called Freudenschtadel, looks like throwing an ice lance… except that they’re executed in a rapid fire speed, making her look like casting a machine gun with ice lance. In addition of this, she can also create multiple ice lasers in one go, fill up the whole screen with tons and tons of ice stars that makes you think she belonged to a Touhou game (definitely could give Cirno a run for her money), or creating mirror images that help out in shooting out more ice lances. And to reach her, Spiritia has to trek through an ice level which doesn’t quite have ice mechanics, but instead have those instant death beams taken from Quick Man.
Ugh, the memories…
And just like several other entries that fill up this list, Freudia can also freeze a huge area, and her ice mastery was adept enough that it can turn a burning forest into a frozen forest in instant. Or stop a godlike attack dead on track by freezing the area. And finally, the reason why she ranked THIS high is that when she returns in the sequel, she gets a similar power-copy thing with Spiritia, but instead of suddenly using other elements like Spiritia, Freudia instead modifies her ice spells to match her friends’ powers. And some of them even gets more ice effects like turning her enemies into ice blocks that she can jump onto.
So no matter what, she stays true to her ice masteries, which get even more devastating and variative as she goes. Freudia is one cool lady whose cold look and personality hides her actually warm heart, which doesn’t deter how deadly her ice can be, the ice that can seal and crush godlike beings forever. So even if her series might not have that kind of great publication like a certain other doujin game, it left enough impression for me that Freudia is actually one of the best Ice Masters in Video Games, ranking at #3.
So if my old countdowns didn’t tip you off… yeah I really like BlazBlue. Probably if you have watched my old video countdown in regards of Arc System Works, yeah, I put Jin Kisaragi on the second place overall… and…
Yeah, no beating on the bush. He’s also on the second place over here.
And hey, that’s the exact same number Quarter Guy put him in his own ice countdown! Eh, probably coincidence. But! Since his countdown was made when the farthest we got was Chronophantasma, and now we already have Central Fiction…? Well, that looks like my job. I’ll do my best if I can do him just ice…
(SLAP!) Bad Chris! Making overly obvious pun like that! Ahem.
Anyway, since BlazBlue is already infamous for its enormously convulted story and terms, let’s see if I can shorten his personality and biography. Hm. Jin Kisaragi was first introduced as the cold hearted Major of NOL and given the title of ‘Hero of Ikaruga’ due to his participation in the Ikaruga Civil War. He’s also a loner type, preferring to work alone, but overall his life looked rather empty, until the arrival of the criminal known as the Grim Reaper, his brother Ragna. This spurred Jin to come out of his office and kill him, because… he’s insane. The mere sight of his brother will make him flip off from being the cold soldier into a cold-blooded psychotic asshole bent on killing Ragna himself. As if cutting off his arm and burning the orphanage they lived in the past wasn’t enough… but then again, Jin gets the excuse that he’s being possessed by that imp Yuki Terumi.
Jin is in possession of the Nox Nyctores Yukianesa, a katana that pretty much freezes everything it touches. It didn’t appear that way at first, but this is best shown in latter games when he goes into Overdrive, where every attacks with his sword freezes it. Using Yukianesa also allows him to create ice swords, big or small, summon ice waves, shoot arrows made of ice or just make a huge chunk of ice out of his hand or body. And most of them freezes his foes on contact, allowing him to setup for great combos. And if he needs range, he can just put out a huge ice spike and ride it like a car. Y’know, the ice car. And if he’s ready to kill, his Astral Finish Artic Dungeon involves stabbing Yukianesa to the ground, freeze the enemy and generate a big blizzard around before putting it back to the sheath and the ice shatters with the enemy… Yikes.
Oh wait, I’m not done. One of the best things I like about Jin is also about his character development. Over the time, you’ll never see him as this ‘psychotic bro-con’ guy again, more shades of him come out, including hidden untapped potentials. First, he took the lesson at heart that he possesses the Power of the Order, to defy the fate put upon him, and if he mastered it, he would no longer be enslaved by Yukianesa (it’s a dangerous weapon). And… he does, mostly by simply refusing to give in to fate and continuing to fight for the sake of the world, marking his steps towards being a real hero. And in addition… he does have one person he held dear… his childhood friend Tsubaki Yayoi. In addition of his obsession on Ragna and his jackassery to others, he still has enough spot to Tsubaki that he’ll go through hell to ensure her safety. Very admirable traits, and in the same time, he himself fulfilled what people say that he’d be one of the strongest beings in that verse.
Take all those… and yes, Jin still kept his icy and cold personality. It’s just tempered, but it’s still there. Even so, he’s also got a really variative colors of personality to match with how powerful he can be when he utilizes his ice to lay frozen wastes to the enemy without mercy with stone cold, precise efficiency. Yeah, the jackass attitude put me off at first, but it eventually grew on me and he stood not only as my main and favorite character in the series, but also the #2 Top Video Game Ice Masters.
All right, so after a very long trek… we finally reach the #1. If you kind of forget who were the previous best masters of ice, click this link to find out. Come on, I’ll give you time.
This is a very tough choice to make, considering my accessibility and my history of my played games. There’s just about one character that is well above Jin in spite of my new favoritism on him in terms of ice mastery, someone who has been around me since childhood and not only undergone quite a remarkable character development, but remains as one of the best ice masters in video games, and even most synonymous with the element when video games are concerned. Maybe copying others… but I don’t care. I have to follow my heart and being honest.
Well now that I’ve said that, I guess it becomes predictable, but gotta go on. From Mortal Kombat… Here’s Sub-Zero. NEVER plain zero!
There is just nothing else I can say. Midway and later Netherrealm Studios has made Sub-Zero super powerful and having many ways to destroy people with his innate ice power. Because this is a Mortal Kombat game, a cold heart is required to be brave enough to brutalize your opponent fatally. And while Sub-Zero has that, he’s also amongst one of the good guys with straight morality. And his journey to get this way is a sight to behold. And hey, he DOES have a character. Are you ready? Here we go.
As usual, when speaking of Sub-Zero, here I meant the more iconic one, Kuai Liang. He was descended from the race of cryomancers, giving him and his big brother Bi Han innate ice powers. The Lin Kuei took them in and trained them to be efficient fighters and assassins, and Kuai Liang took on the codename Tundra at first when Bi Han took on Sub-Zero to participate at the first Mortal Kombat. Scorpion killed him with vengeance. So Kuai Liang took on the mantle of Sub-Zero and participated at the second tournament, but while his brother was merciless, this new Sub-Zero actually has time to show compassion and mercy to an opponent he defeated. That is the sign that he’s different than his brother, allowing his feud with Scorpion to end more smoothly, and it’ll only get better from here on.
When Lin Kuei decided that every members should be roboticized, Sub-Zero managed to escape while being picked up by Raiden to become Earthrealm’s defender. Sub-Zero does that, and also defeated his cyborg pursuers, including his best friend Smoke, and also Cyrax and Sektor, Sub-Zero instead spared and reprogrammed Cyrax to become a force of good (Sektor was apparently a lost cause).
Over time, his ice mastery got even better and better that he manages to materialize a weapon for him, the frozen sword called Kori Blade. Which is made out of thin air. Yeah, Sub-Zero doesn’t need to carry a backpack of weaponry, he can create anything out of ice, out of thin air, and it can take any form, other times it’s a hammer or a knife, but he prefers sword greatly. And you know my stance about swords and ice. Both are one of the greatest combination.
Eventually, he found the Dragon Medallion and his origins as a cryomancer and increased his already potent ice mastery into even greater levels, and after toppling Sektor for good… he took on Lin Kuei leadership and turned the group into a force of good. Words just can’t do justice on how awesome that is, if you like a good guy, but I’ll just say this: It’s a testament of Sub-Zero’s good heart in spite is cold and serious disposition, you’ll never see him as just a ‘typical cold hearted fighter’ again. He even avoided death by the Deadly Alliance and subsequent enslavement by Onaga because of unlocking the secrets of the cryomancers.
But of course, like the rest, he died in Armageddon and the timeline gets reset…
At first Sub-Zero might get the short end of the stick, where he was captured instead of Smoke and then turned into Cyber Sub-Zero… which by the way I’m pretty okay at and it gives more toys to him temporarily. Then eventually he also got killed by Sindel and revived as a revenant by Quan Chi… but come Mortal Kombat X, his fortune got back on track, unlike Jade and the rest. Not only Raiden restored him back to normal, Sub-Zero is even more powerful that he didn’t need to discover the Dragon Medallion or his Cryomancer armor, he just went on to retake Lin Kuei and turn it into a force of good. He’s just that good of a kombatant, even before you take account how much of a great ice master he is.
Well, then let’s not beat around the bush and let’s analyze further. Sub-Zero, being a cryomancer, is that adept in ice that most of his punches and touches are enough to freeze people, even more if he concentrated it into a blast that freezes anyone it touches. Or he can alternatively freeze the ground and make it slippery. Or his other trademark, creating replicas of ice that freezes anyone that touches it.
And if you’re frozen and being dizzy? Oh boy, that’s death tolls for you, because Sub-Zero’s uppercut (or just anything he uses to hit you) will then completely shatter the ice and you as well. Or he can instead create ice grenades that explode on the enemy, or just lift them up, freeze them, before shattering them in two. Or how about just freezing their inner organs before grabbing them and personally shattering them? Sub-Zero has endless possibilities on how to kill his opponent with ice, and he’ll make sure it’s damn brutal.
… Oh right, you want me to speak about the infamous Spine Rip? While it’s true sometimes Kuai Liang did that, I don’t think it kind of matters in his ice powers. Besides, it’s Bi Han that did it first. When you think of it, Kuai Liang is the first Sub-Zero that implements ice and freezing in his Fatalities.
Many ice masters come and go, but so far, regardless of how much it’s following the popular thing, Sub-Zero remain as the undisputed grandmaster of ice. And this isn’t because it’s obligatory to put him on an ice list like the rest, I do like him that much personally. He keeps his head cool, not afraid to get brutal, and has a lot of plans about how to do that with ices of death that he created out of nowhere with his own power. His personality might be a straightforward one, but it’s still enough to display his sense of honor and compassion, not making him completely heartless… a cold heart is still a heart after all. All ice masters really should take example from Sub-Zero, for he is the Greatest Ice Master in the Video Game History.
In my opinion, at least.
I am ChrisX and I’ll see you next countdown…
Which by the way probably wouldn’t reach 20 characters. I’m only doing this because it’s a special occasion! Happy birthday, me! Happy Holiday, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everybody!
Jaina Proudmoore (Warcraft/Heroes of the Storm)
Glacies (Super Robot Wars)
Yusuke Kitagawa (Persona 5)
Lissandra (League of Legends)
Ancient Apparition (Dota 2)