Video game characters boast a ton of cool powers, whether it’s fancy weapons, super strength, or devastating psychic ability. Though there are a few games where having a psychic ability is a main plot point, there are far less of them than you might think—mind reading, fortune telling, and telekinesis are surprisingly infrequent in games.
But that just means that when there are psychic characters, they stand out from their fellow video game characters. Here are some of our favorite psychic game characters.
EarthBound‘s Ness Boasts Significant Psychic Ability
As the main protagonist of EarthBound, Ness’ psychic ability (called PSI) in the series, allows him to fight off the evil Giygas. Along with his traveling partners, Paula, Jeff, and Poo, Ness sets out to find the eight sanctuaries and become more in tune with Earth’s power.
Though he’s also handy with a baseball bat, Ness’ psychic ability (which he improves over the course of EarthBound by fighting his nightmare, freeing himself from Giygas’ influence) gives him significant power to alter cosmic events. His powers also make him a popular choice in the Super Smash Bros. series, where his projectiles and combos originally made him favored in the competitive scene, though his viability has decreased in later games.
Psycho Mantis Uses Psychic Ability to Read Your Mind
Psycho Mantis‘ supreme psychic ability means that his boss battle is one of the most interesting in the Metal Gear series, as his powers read the player’s memory card and vibrate the controller. But aside from the inventiveness of the fight, Psycho Mantis is a pretty interesting character in his own right—after accidentally reading his father’s mind and discovering that his father blamed him for his mother’s death, Psycho Mantis burned down his entire town and killed his father in the process.
Psycho Mantis used his psychic ability in service of the KGB and FBI, but, after diving too deeply into the mind of a killer, he lost his own personality to the killer’s psychosis. After becoming a freelance psychic spy, he joined black ops unit FOXHOUND, leading the group’s psychological warfare efforts until his death at Solid Snake’s hands in Metal Gear Solid.
Psychonauts‘s ‘Raz’ Attends Summer Camp for Psychic Ability
Psychonauts, despite suffering from poor sales, was a critically acclaimed cult hit. It’s protagonist, Raz, has some serious psychic chops—he arrives at Whispering Rock Psychic Summer Camp with the ability to read minds and, over the course of the game, learns clairvoyance, levitation, and telekinesis.
Raz escapes the circus where he was raised to get away from his father, who dislikes his psychic ability. At Whispering Rock Psychic Summer Camp, he meets up with new friends and ultimately saves them from Dr. Loboto and his scheme to remove the campers’ brains.
Pokémon‘s Sabrina Slays With Psychic Team
While Pokémon’s Sabrina might not be the hardest gym leader to defeat in the series— it’s hard to pick the most difficult one; Whitney’s Miltank in Gold and Silver holds a special place of hatred in many generation two fans’ hearts—her all-psychic team could be a real challenge thanks to high speed and confusion attacks. She’s appeared in several games as Saffron City’s gym leader, with an interesting bit of in-game lore stating that there were once two gyms in the city, a fighting-type and Sabrina’s own, before she devastated the fighting Gym and had their Gym status revoked.
Sabrina’s own psychic ability includes telepathy with her Pokémon and the ability to bend spoons. She also seems to be pretty adept at predicting the future—when challenged, she states that she saw the player coming several years before their actual arrival.
Alma Wade’s Psychic Ability Fills Players with F.E.A.R.
Though the creepy little girl trope might be getting a little overdone in modern horror, it hit its video game peak in F.E.A.R., the horror FPS that subjected players to horrific visions thanks to the psychic ability of Alma Wade. The subject of a corporation’s awful testing, Alma gets put into a forced coma to be used to breed powerfully psychic children.
Through her psychic ability, Alma tortures members of F.E.A.R. as they try to hunt down her son and destroy her. Her vengeance takes the form of frightening hallucinations, telekinesis, and pyrokinesis. Heavily inspired by Japanese horror aesthetics, the F. E. A. R. series shows the horrifying power of Alma’s psychic ability.
Who are your favorite psychic characters in video games?