Top 10 Alternate Costumes

by Joe Juba on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:07 AM

Halloween is all about the costumes, but video game characters don't need a holiday as an excuse to dress up in different clothing. Alternate costumes and character skins are a common extra feature, putting a slightly different twist on the action for gamers who enjoy multiple playthroughs. This list highlights the best of the bunch – new outfits that change the look and feel of the characters, and can even alter the gameplay.

10. Nelo Angelo – Devil May Cry 3: Special Edition

Players who complete hard mode as Vergil unlock the "Corrupt Vergil" character skin. In addition to some visual differences, this incarnation uses the Nelo Angelo (Vergil's form from the original Devil May Cry) as its devil trigger form. Players are able to use all of Nelo Angelo's signature abilities, like energy blasts and summoned swords. From a fan perspective, the ability to storm around as this intimidating figure is a dream come true.

9. Mascot – Bully

Nothing shows your school spirit like becoming the Bullworth Bullhorns' mascot and traipsing around campus. Unlocked in the lead-up to a hilarious mission that has Jimmy Hopkins sabotaging the big football game, this get-up allows players to perform the mascot's signature cow dance for nearby students. It may not make Jimmy the most popular student, but the mascot suit still delivers the laughs.

8. Raiden – Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood

In a rare instance of cross-publisher cameos, Ezio can take on the appearance of cyborg Raiden from Konami's Metal Gear Solid series. By performing well on virtual training challenges, players earn this anachronistic outfit. Despite Raiden's typical array of weapons and abilities, Ezio doesn't gain any additional powers while wearing the cyber-suit. However, just seeing this futuristic warrior climbing around Rome is worth the effort.

7. The Amazing Bag Man – Spider Man: Shattered Dimensions

This obscure and humiliating outfit has only appeared a handful of times in the Spider-Man universe – primarily when the webslinger loses his regular suit. Borrowing some spare clothes from the Fantastic Four and hiding his identity with a paper bag, Peter Parker is able to keep his identity a secret. The suit even has a "kick me" sign on the back. Kudos to developer Beenox for including this bizarre and amusing reference in Shattered Dimensions. 

6. Cod of War – God of War II

Kratos is much less intimidating dressed as a fish...especially since he also wields fish hooks instead of his blades of chaos. In addition to making him look ridiculous, the Cod of War costume (unlocked by beating the game) also increases the value of red orbs. That means that players can upgrade skills faster at the expense of Kratos' dignity. 

On the next page: A dapper secret agent, a sexy bear, and more...

5. Doughnut Drake – Uncharted

Nathan Drake is a predictably hunky action hero, but this skin puts him on the other side of the cultural beauty standard. Apart from giving him a lower voice, this overweight version of the leading man doesn't affect Drake's maneuverability. This leads to some predictably entertaining platforming sequences once you have Doughnut Drake unlocked. 

4. Tuxedo – Metal Gear Solid

In a nod to the James Bond adventures that helped inspire the Metal Gear series, Snake will wear a tuxedo for a playthrough once players have seen both endings in the original Metal Gear Solid. It doesn't do anything special or make Snake any less stealthy – it just looks really slick, particularly in the opening scene as Snake takes off his wetsuit and stands majestically in an elevator wearing the tux. 

3. Mafia Leon – RE 4 (PS2)

Leon mows down zombies with all kinds of weapons, but equipping the Chicago Typewriter (which has infinite ammo) while wearing this classic mafia suit just clicks perfectly. After the desperation you experience playing through the game normally, the unstoppable (and stylish) stone-cold killer approach is extremely satisfying.  

2. Kuma/R. Mika – Street Fighter X Tekken

The best unlockable costumes in Street Fighter X Tekken involve putting one character in another character's clothes. Of these, the most memorable example is Kuma (an actual bear) dressed up as R. Mika (from Street Fighter Alpha 3). Mika's outfit is definitely intended to be sexy and provocative...but those qualities don't really come through when a bear is wearing the ensemble. 

1. No-Suit Samus – Metroid

This is the most iconic alternate suit on the whole list, and the reason an entire generation of gamers will never forget the name "Justin Bailey." Samus doesn't lose any of her special abilities without her power suit; this version of the character just doesn't hide the fact that seemed so shocking when Metroid first released: Samus is a woman.