5 reasons that make Franklin the best of the three GTA 5 protagonists
All three GTA 5 protagonists are entertaining in their own right, but Franklin Clinton is arguably the best of the trio. Some reasons for this detailed below include meta-gameplay aspects, as well as some subjective opinions tied to more minor things. Either way, there's a solid case to be made for him being better than Trevor Philips or Michael De Santa.
Note that this article will primarily look at GTA 5 for these reasons, although GTA Online will be referenced in one of them since Franklin has a role in both games. Let's start with an objective point before diving into more subjective content.
Note: Some aspects of this article are subjective.
Five ways Franklin is better than the other two GTA 5 protagonists
1) Running speed
YouTuber DarkViperAU made a viral video embedded above that shows how weird GTA 5 and Grand Theft Auto Online's movement can be. A relevant part of it mentions the three protagonists' running speeds. Here is a summary of how fast each character runs when doing Tab Run (a technique where you constantly equip and de-equip your weapon):
- Trevor: 26 km/h (normally 22 km/h)
- Michael: 26 km/h (normally 23 km/h)
- Franklin: 28 km/h (normally 24 km/h)
That means Franklin is GTA 5 fastest protagonist when on foot and if the player uses the third-person camera. Using first-person POV when making him run sees him perform the same as the other two characters in terms of top speed and is not recommended. Nonetheless, his slightly better top speed is a trait worth mentioning.
2) Most interesting special ability
Each Grand Theft Auto 5 protagonist has a special ability. Michael's slows down time while shooting, while Trevor's makes him invulnerable to damage. Both are fine, but Franklin's is arguably the most useful for general gameplay and the best in certain situations.
His special ability (Driving Focus) allows him to slow down time while driving. This might sound simple, but combining it with the Brake Boosting technique can make him almost double his driving speed for a short while. Such a helpful special ability is a godsend in both casual and efficient playthroughs.
3) Cool and relatable for many people
Trevor Philips is a bit cartoony and wild with his personality at times, while Michael De Santa's rich background and marital troubles won't resonate with most people. By comparison, it's easier to relate to Franklin as he:
- Is the youngest of the three protagonists
- Grew up poor
- Is pretty laid-back, straightforward, and ambitious
He's pretty cool, and the lack of an over-the-top gimmick helps make him more interesting to some players than Michael De Santa or Trevor Philips.
4) Great role in GTA Online
Michael De Santa has never appeared in GTA 5's multiplayer version, while Trevor's role in it is only limited to the early days that were canonly before the single-player storyline. Thus, Franklin is the only protagonist the player interacts with after Grand Theft Auto 5's campaign mode.
He's married to Tanisha and even has children with her. Not only that, but he also does the following GTA Online:
- Helps the player run the Agency business
- Takes care of Chop to this day
- Hangs out with Lamar
- Became playable for the Short Trip missions
His success from GTA 5 still translates well several years later into GTA Online. Now, one just has to wonder if he will be seen in Grand Theft Auto 6 or another future title.
5) He's the protagonist who controls the ending
Franklin is the first protagonist you play after GTA 5's prologue, and he eventually gets the choice to end this title's main storyline. Although all three main characters canonly live, the finale still allows players to end Michael or Trevor's life if they'd like. Franklin's life is never in jeopardy.
His meeting with Michael also kickstarts much of this game's other storyline elements, eventually leading to them doing the Jewel Store Job, which makes Trevor discover that Michael is still alive.