5. Sora/ Riku
The Sora vs Riku rivalry is one that spans the entire series. The very first time you see the two interact is during one of the very first cutscenes in the game, in which Riku calls out Sora for lying around on the beach while he is hard at work on their raft. Almost immediately Sora springs into action and starts gathering supplies. While gathering supplies you can challenge characters around the island to a duel and practice honing your skills. However, after you challenge Riku on the first day to a fight or on the second day to a race for who gets to name the ship and share a paopu fruit with Kairi, a small text box will show up after the fight saying the score is 0-1 or 1-0 depending on if you won or lost the fight. This text shows that each of the characters are constantly trying to improve and best one another. This rivalry spans the games as you see them trying to improve, impress, and one up each other as they occasionally meet in the main series games. Plus, they even have to try to improve based on how the other is doing during their mark of mastery exams in Dream, Drop, Distance.
4. Phoenix Wright/ Miles Edgeworth
Rivalries do not exist solely on a battlefield. Between Phoenix Wright and Miles Edgeworth, the prosecutors’ rivalry revolve around the courtroom. Their words, wit and knowledge of litigation are their weapons and when faced against one another neither Wright nor Edgeworth are afraid to use what they have at their disposal. Their battles are not born of animosity either, but rather respect and admiration. Their camaraderie even stretches back to their childhood. As kids, Wright was wrongfully accused of stealing Edgeworth’s lunch money, but was defended by none other than Edgeworth himself. This set a strong precedent of friendship and rivalry as both Wright and Edgeworth push one another to always be their best for as long as they’ve known one another.
3. Scorpion/ Sub-Zero
The original Mortal Kombat only hinted at the rivalry between Scorpion and Sub-Zero. The early rivalry, for players, may have just been a character preference between either the ice guy or the “get over here” guy, but developer Midway Games did imply that the hatred and distrust Scorpion felt for Sub-Zero stemmed from their opposing ninja clans. With every new Mortal Kombat release though, the back stories of the two warriors grew a bit more. Scorpion, whose real name is Hanzo Hasashi, was a member of the Shirai Ryu clan before he was killed by Sub-Zero, also known as Bi-Han of the Lin Kuei. Scorpion later returned as a being of the netherworld and eventually took vengeance upon Sub-Zero. Their rivalry surpasses even death as both warriors make numerous returns across the series. But whatever form they return as, Scorpion and Sub-Zero are ultimately linked to one another. Like Scorpion says to Sub-Zero in Mortal Kombat X, “Again and always.”
2. Red/ Blue
Without a doubt, one of the greatest rivalries ever witnessed in any game, and one of the best rivalry stories ever experienced. Yes, they were originally Red and Green in the Japanese versions but for this list, let’s go with the colors the western world is used to. And although red or blue can be the hero based on which version of the game you’re playing, Red seems to canonically be the hero based on events we later see in Gold/Silver. Welcome to the world of Pokemon! The game begins and Red, an aspiring Pokemon trainer is ready to embark on his adventure but is confronted by Blue. This leads to a series of encounters with your rival, to see who really has what it takes to be the best Pokemon trainer and League Champion. Your rivals seems to always be one step ahead of you, but it’s Red who comes out victorious in the end. This is one rivalry for the ages.