Okay, listen. I get it. You read the title and there are only 2 possible reactions. You either go “why would you do a top 10 list about games where you beat up kids? That is so wrong”. Or the other reaction which is “OHHHH YEAAAAAAHHHH”. And I’m exaggerating only a little bit.
Kids in media, especially in video games, have certain privileges that adults cannot boast. And any adult can easily understand why. The thought of harm happening to children is just sickening. Because you instantly think “what if that happened to my kid”. Even if you do not have children!
So you cannot just gun down a kid in your movie, because it would naturally upset a good part of your audience. That being said. You cannot tell me that Biff getting punched in Back To The Future did not feel satisfying. Or how about that 30 seconds montage from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia where Mac and Charlie destroy some children? After decades of adults being victimized by kids in various sitcoms, that scene is just a blessing.
Video games are chuck full of hated kid characters. Nelkir from Skyrim became infamous among gamers for hurling insults at them and hiding behind his developer-granted invulnerability. But some video games let you get your sweet, sweet revenge.
Welcome to my top 10 list of games that let you beat up those annoying kids.
The Pokémon Series (1996 – Current)
This entire series of games is about children having their merry adventures with random captured “pocket monsters”. Because apparently child endangerment laws do not exist in the Pokémon universe. Game Freak, the developers, came up with a great way to create a more engaging story via the introduction of rivals.
Rivals clash with you during the course of the story. They egg you on to train your Pokémon and more often than not they act as a “power check”. So you have to overcome them before accessing new areas with stronger Pokémon.
And the first two rivals in the first two generations of Pokémon are real a-holes. Blue and Silver represent the era when rivals in Pokémon were really bratty, salty, and hell-bent on crushing you in a duel. And while winning against them shouldn’t really count as us “beating them up”, it still was oh-so-satisfying to listen to their defeat dialogue.
Dragon’s Dogma (2012)
Dragon’s Dogma is a fantastic role-playing hack’n’slash. It features great customization options, the combat is fun and the story has its moments. But what sets Dragon’s Dogma apart is the ridiculous amount of interaction with NPCs, enemies, and the world around you.
You can pick up many objects around dungeons and towns to use as a makeshift weapon/projectile. Funnily enough, you can even pick up NPCs against their consent and yeet them off a cliff. Or you can “redirect” your companions if they have trouble navigating the battlefield.
The game does not allow you to slay children in cold blood, which is arguably for the best. But you can still break a clay pot over some kid’s head if they decide to annoy you! And sending them flailing around and running off into the distance never gets old.
League of Legends (2009)
League of Legends should score double the points of any other entry on this list. Not only can you brutalize virtual teenagers and kids. But you also get ample opportunities to actually ruin some kid’s day. Do not feel too bad for them, they play League after all (I’m kidding of course).
But seriously. I’m surprised League did not get into any kind of major controversy over the years. Parents and the media get outraged by things like violence in Grand Theft Auto. But you can literally vaporize, bleed out, bomb, gun down, gas, and fisticuff children, animals, and animal children in this title!
I guess that would require paying more attention than parents and media can muster up. Since all the action is witnessed by the player from a zoomed-out top-down view. But some of that “action” is beyond screwed up if you really think about it!
River City Girls (2019)
River City Girls is an awesome throwback to the golden age of beat ’em ups. The story follows Misako and Kyoko who embark on a quest to find their kidnapped boyfriends. The duo rampages through the city attacking anyone who they find suspicious in search of clues.
Well, the game pretty much opens up with you combo-ing your way out of a high school. And then just keeps flooding your screen with teens and young adults who want to throw hands. But the more interesting aspect of River City Girls is that different social groups/subcultures act as different enemy types.
So if you are fed up with cheerleaders, people who are into the preppy style, school delinquents, the yakuza, or even casino mascots. The game has you covered! Those and many, many more appear as enemies that you can combo, juggle, launch into the air and pummel into the ground at your leisure.