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5 most underrated GTA protagonists of all time

Some characters who deserve more recognition (Images via Rockstar Games)
Some characters who deserve more recognition (Images via Rockstar Games)
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Rajarshi Acharya

The GTA series has spawned a slew of memorable characters, but not all of them are treated with the respect they deserve. This article examines some of the series' most underappreciated characters.

It also goes over the reasons why they might be underappreciated and why they should be praised more.

Note: This article reflects the writer's opinions.


Which GTA protagonists went severely underappreciated?

5) Luis Lopez

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Luis Lopez from The Ballad of Gay Tony might be one of the most underdeveloped protagonists in the GTA franchise. While protagonists like Mike and Claude are much more underdeveloped, they fit in with the simplistic storylines of the games they are featured in.

The plot background for Luis is quite interesting. He is a former criminal who wants to go straight after getting out of prison, but circumstances seem to catch up to him. His best friends are drug dealers, his boss has found himself in a tangle with criminals, and his mother is indebted to a loan shark.

All this led to him getting engaged in a life of crime once again. However, such a compelling plot was undermined by Luis himself. He seems nearly absent, and his presence is unconvincing. The game would have been far more addictive if he had been given more life.


4) Toni Cipriani

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Most GTA players often dismiss Toni Cipriani from Liberty City Stories as a generic character. This isn't necessarily correct, however. While it's true that Toni is based on several stereotypical mob characters, his personality and character development aren't entirely unoriginal.

He was one of the most likable characters in GTA 3, to which Liberty City Stories is a prequel. Toni has undergone a significant transformation since the events of the previous game. In Liberty City Stories, he lacks the sociopathic tendencies of Tommy Vercetti or the ambitious drive of CJ.

His unwavering loyalty to his boss, on the other hand, is unusual for a GTA protagonist. While this may seem a bit dull compared to other crazier heroes, he seems much more credible as a result of this.


3) Huang Lee

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Huang Lee is underappreciated primarily because he was a 2D character in an era when HD characters became the norm. Many players dismiss his constant sarcasm as cliched. Huang, however, appears to be a little more developed beneath the surface.

He always tries to find humor in any situation, even when it's life-threatening. He has a high level of self-awareness as well. It is clear from the start of Chinatown Wars when he refers to himself as a spoiled brat and his father as a corrupt and decadent figure.

He isn't just an all-talk and no-show person either. Huang doesn't hesitate to antagonize anyone he meets, no matter how powerful they are or what kind of predicament he is in.


2) Johnny Klebitz

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Johnny Klebitz from The Lost and Damned is another example of how Rockstar left out a great opportunity to develop a character. He has several flaws, such as being an ex-addict and being often manipulated by Billy in the past.

He eventually overcomes most of this and begins to move forward into a better and more controlled chapter of his life near the end of the game. However, all of this was thrown out the window when GTA 5 revealed him to be a relapsed addict. He's also lost all sense of self-respect and cannot stand up for himself, let alone others.

Finally, he becomes the first and only GTA protagonist to be killed on-screen when Trevor violently stomps him to death. None of this makes sense, with Johnny most likely serving as a scapegoat for Rockstar's edgy introduction of Trevor.


1) Victor Vance

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Victor Vance's story is one of the most mature and darkest ones made in the GTA franchise. Unfortunately, GTA Vice City Stories did not sell as much as it should have, which led to his story mainly being unheard of.

Victor is a soldier who gets dishonorably discharged after being involved with a corrupt senior officer. He then delves further into a life of crime, mainly due to his sociopathic brother Lance and their junkie mother. His sense of responsibility for his family and close ones led to his downfall.

It also led to his eventual demise in GTA Vice City. Throughout the story, he gets used by nearly every other character, but his moral code is what keeps him trapped in this vicious cycle.


Edited by Yasho Amonkar
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