5. Howard T. Ackerman (Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3)
Ackerman’s call to the player to ask whether they are “ready to send those Commies running back to their mommies?” really sums up this particular president up for me. He’s brash, loud, confrontational and staunchly anti-communist to a hilarious degree. He fits in very well with Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3’s over-the-top cartoonish look at geo-political struggles and that’s what makes him stand out for me in a sea of videogame Presidents. He takes what most likely is a Republican viewpoint of America and just runs with it to a ridiculous level, going so far as to make his campaign slogan “Screw ‘Em All”. Now what does terrify me a little is that a lot of his rhetoric sounds awfully similar to a certain Republican nominee in the 2016 presidential race. The fact that this outrageous and terrifying parody of a politician has a got a real life equivalent that might take over America scares the ever loving shit out of me. But hey, at least President Ackerman is hilarious within the confines of fiction and video games and not reality.
4. Laguna Loire (Final Fantasy VIII)
Plenty of Presidents start out with a knack for writing, whether it’s in penning dramatic missives against social injustices or just writing for the joy of storytelling. Laguna Loire started off similarly, a soldier who dreamed of being a travelling journalist. This didn’t work out for a number of reasons (#1 being that he was a character in a Final Fantasy game, and those are never that simple) and the man with the machine gun eventually became renowned as a hero for his efforts in the fight against the sorceress Adel. Naturally, this led to his appointment as President (no election needed, presumably because you don’t want to piss off a war hero with a giant gun). While his past may not have been the easiest time of his life, it certainly makes for an impressive resume: a romance with a future singing sensation, monster hunting, (attempted) interspecies communication with the local wildlife, and leading a jailbreak to name a few things. Laguna’s kindness, ingenuity, and ability to be at the right place at the right time make him one hell of a commander-in-chief.
3. President George Sears (Metal Gear Solid, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty)
In Metal Gear Solid and Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, George Sears is the cover identity under which Solidus Snake, the final, “balanced”, clone of Big Boss produced by the Les Enfant Terrible project. Under this fake identity Sears campaigned for and subsequently won the Presidency of the United States. During his time as President he helped to both incite and later undermine the Fox Hound rebellion at the Shadow Moses Nuclear Weapons Storage Facility in the Fox Archipelago. The scandal that followed that incident led to his subsequent resignation in disgrace.According to the lore of the Metal Gear games, Sears/Solidus’ rise and fall was engineered by the Patriots a secret organization that controls governments around the globe. During his retirement President Sears resumed his identity as Solidus Snake and pursued his passion for eyepatch fashion, Japanese swordsmanship, military attack jet surfing, and robotic tentacle strangulation.
2. The Protagonist/The Player/You (Saints Row 4)
Yes! Of course you are on this list! Yes you, the reader and the player! You are a wonderful president of the United States with your deep knowledge of what’s wrong with the country and using your deep knowledge to fix it all! But let’s face it, the protagonist of Saints Row 4 really isn’t you (as much as you would like to be). It’s you through the lens of the brains of the wacky folk at Volition. You may have a lot of control over the protagonist, and go so far as to make them look like you, but this POTUS is still a distinct character. You may start off with low approval ratings and eventually be the only living world leader because of an Alien invasion, but you certainly are one of the coolest presidents that the good ol’ US of A has seen: You decked out the White House to your bombastic style and pass some pretty dang important bills that could change the shape of the world as we know it. In short, the President in Saints Row 4 is rad as hell, even if their relation to you is difficult to understand.