TA Top Five: Facial Hair

By Jonathan Barnes,
When the Editorial Team was looking through some of your suggestions for Top Five lists you'd like to see, one particular suggestion jumped off of the screen and slapped me like a wet cod on a hot morning.

"Facial Hair"

Suggested by IRISH PATRIOT x, I immediately pulled this topic close to my bosom and embraced it as much as I embrace my own glorious facial follicles. When formulating this list, I pulled from all areas of facial hair excellence ranging from the practical to the ridiculous. The only general rule that I had was that the facial hair couldn't be player created and had to be somewhat stylish (feel free to pour one out for the scraggly beards of Snake and John Marston). I also gave strong preference to razor-averse origins from the past two generations of games, as they were the first to really show what graphical horsepower could do to facial follicles, so defenders of LeChuck, Dr. Eggman, and Dr. Wily can all join forces in the way-back-when corner. Also, I swear to all things BIC and Barbasol, if someone complains about Mario, Luigi, WaLuigi, or Wario not being on this list, I may just lose my never-shaving mind. Those pre-emptive gripes aside, if your favorite beard, mustache, or muttonchops didn't make the cut, it's because of a personal vendetta and is in no way related to the possibility of me simply forgetting.

Dishonorable Mentions
Baird's Soul Patch - Gears of War Series
Baird's Beard

I'm a big fan of Baird, but Baird's beard is just bad. Friends don't let friends grow soul patches.

Honorable Mentions

Adam Jensen's Stubble/Goatee - Deus Ex Series

If you're looking for post-modern style, you don't get much more suave than Adam Jensen. Sporting the always-classy stubble and featuring the best Van Dyke this side of Tony Stark, Jensen's look is always on point. One can only wonder if he received some kind of facial hair augmentation.

Geralt's Beard - The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Achievements
Witcher 3 E3 16

I'm going to take the unprecedented step of awarding an Honorable Mention to a game that isn't even out yet. Last month, a "major news story" making the rounds of other sites was that The Witcher 3 would feature dynamic beard growth. While we haven't seen just how wild man Geralt will be getting just yet, I'm sticking him here as a prediction of future excellence.

Top Five
5. Eddie's Muttonchops - Brütal Legend Achievements

Much like the lightsaber, muttonchops used to be a weapon of elegance from a more civilized age... called the '70's... ask your parents... or watch this season of Mad Men. While the presence of the dreaded soul patch keeps Eddie from scoring higher on this list, the real award should go to Kill Master, but since he's based on the very real Lemmy Kilmister I couldn't in good conscience put him on the list... because he'd win... Lemmy rules.

4. Hank's Beard - Evolve Achievements

Just look at Hank's beard. LOOK AT ITS MAJESTY AND BE FRIGHTENED AND AMAZED! There are beards and then there's the forest of fine foliage taking up residence on Hank's face. It's like a glorious thicket of amazing. Word has it that if his shield projector fails, the team can take cover behind Hank's perfect beard.

3. Salvador's Beard - Borderlands 2 (Xbox 360) Achievements

Call it cliche for a dwarf to have a beard, but old Gimli's goat-tugger ain't got nothing on Salvador's styled chin curtain! Perfectly matched with his spiky fauxhawk, Salvador's spiked beard seemed perfect for Pandora and his attitude seemed to be a cipher for the actual game: if anything's worth shooting, it's worth shooting with TWO guns.

2. Captain Price's Mustache - Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Achievements
Captain Price

A mustache on steroids. Captain Price's cookie duster is most certainly not regulation (and has more than a bit of Lemmy in it), but I wouldn't order him to shave it or tame it in any way. Price's stache is so awesome that Tom Selleck had to stop and admire it.

1. Dorian's Handlebar Stache - Dragon Age: Inquisition Achievements

Immaculately groomed, forever stylish, and a hit with the ladies! Dorian's stache is the stache that all staches wish they were (mine included). If his witty banter and mage skills weren't enough to keep him in your party as you traveled through Orlais and Ferelden, then his mustache should have been the deal closer.

The TA Team will be bringing you The TA Top Five every Sunday until we run out of coolness to debate and discuss. If you have an idea for a Top Five you'd like us to do, be sure to let us know in the comments!
Jonathan Barnes
Written by Jonathan Barnes
Jonathan has been a news/views contributor since 2010. When he's not writing reviews, features, and opinion pieces, he spends his days working as an informal science educator and his nights as an international man of mystery.