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General Modern Character Development: Groose or Linebeck?

Lord Carlisle

He Who Shall Not be Named
Joined
Sep 9, 2012
Location
Florida
Zelda games have a reputation for getting players connected to their characters. A lot of gamers feel the emotion emanating from some NPCs, myself included. Heck, I even felt sympathetic for the postman in MM! (THIS THREAD CONTAINS SPOILERS. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK.)

Character development is one of the most important aspects in storytelling... whether that story be told through book, movie, or even a video game! I've played a lot of video games (admittedly, mostly Nintendo ones), and the best examples of character development I've seen are both in Zelda games! As if that's not enough, one is from arguably the BEST Zelda game... and the other is from arguably the WORST. If you haven't gathered who those two are from the title, I'm talking about Groose and Linebeck.

First up, Linebeck. He's from Phantom Hourglass, probably the worst game in the series. He is by far the most interesting character (or should I say... the ONLY interesting character) in the game. PH was actually my intro to the series... and I liked it a lot. Which really speaks to the quality of the Zelda series as a whole. But back on topic. Linebeck is pretty much the Jack Sparrow of Zelda. He does a lot of bragging and boasting and is famed as a great captain but in reality he's a greedy coward.

Second, we have Groose. He's from Skyward Sword, revered by many as the best Zelda game. At the beginning of the game you despise him... and by the end you forget all about your disliking him and he becomes one of your favorite characters (just like our other contender). Whether it be his goofy appearance or hilarious dialogue and actions, you love him. BOTH of these traits are also shared by Linebeck. Groose at first is like the Gaston of Nintendo... but he quickly changes from that.

When you first meet Linebeck, he gets you to save him, takes your treasure map, and runs off.

When you first meet Groose, he bullies you due to his jealousy of Link and Zelda. So far, they're not very similar.

Later on, after you do virtually all of the work, Linebeck follows you into the hull of the Ghost Ship and is confounded that there is no treasure. Old man Oshus appears and explains that the treasure is but a mere rumor, and Linebeck gets furious over this, temporarily refusing to help you anymore.

In SS, later in the game, Groose drops out of the sky, and eventually you explain to him what's going on. He then talks big-headed and believes he's going to save Zelda, but when old lady Impa tells him otherwise, he gets furious and refuses to believe it.

The similarities are a little subtle, but still there. So by this point, both characters are selfish jerks whom have so far been nothing but an annoyance. But that will change. There are lots of little points in which both characters develop, but now I'll skip to the big change.

At the climax of PH, Link is unable to save Tetra from Bellum. After being grabbed by the monster, his sword slides across the deck over to Linebeck. Linebeck hesitates, but grabs the sword and attacks Bellum, saving Link but sacrificing himself in the process.

SS has TWO similarities to the latter. At the climax of SS, when Zelda awakens, Link is unable to save Zelda due to exhaustion. Groose stands up and attempts to block Ghirahim, ultimately getting kicked aside. At this moment, you love Groose more than ever and praise him as the hero he is. Just like Linebeck.

The other similarity is at the point where Zelda is falling to her doom, Link unable to do anything. Groose appears and sprints towards her, saving her life.

So the question is... which character had the overall better development? Personally, I believe Linebeck did. But that's just my opinion. What do you guys think?
 

Dragoncat

Twilit wildcat: Aerofelis
Holy crap Linebeck dies? Wow... *hasnt played PH*

So, since I havent played PH, you know my answer. Groose doesnt die, but by the end of the game, he's a badass like you described. If I were in the game I would probably date him, lol. Pipit's cute, but him and Karane are a canon couple. Groose...his personality mixes well with mine. Why must all the guys that would be perfect for me be fictional?

Fangirling aside...I bet Groose could be a pirate like Linebeck if he wanted to, lol. Picture him in a pirate outfit with an eye patch and a parrot perched on that hair of his. :lol:
 

Sir Quaffler

May we meet again
Hrrrrrrrnnnnnnnnghh...... this is taxing my mental capacities....

On one hand, there's Linebeck, which was one of the only things getting me through the game. I loved his Capt. Jack personality, and the back history between him and Jolene was interesting. I liked his heroic stand at the end, led me to believe that there was good in him after all. And then at the end, he realizes that he wants to sail the seas more than simple treasure, and he gets his ship back. A person who has his own motivations and is fleshed out more in the adventure. Love it.

Then there's Groose, who is the stereotypical bully at the beginning and a downright asshat. I seriously thought that he would turn up to be the predecessor to Ganondorf, what with the hair, eyes, style of dress, and mannerisms. Then he turned into a sappy mess when Zelda left, and I lost what little respect I had for him. Then when he dropped down on you from above I was all like "Groose you idiot you're gonna kill us both!" But, suffice it to say, he did a total 180 after this. He accepted his role in destiny where before he outright denied it. He became very ingenious with his contraptions where before I thought he was a buffoon. And he became an extremely caring individual where before he was an a**hole. Also love it.

So you have one character where his personality is fleshed out more, and another who went through a complete change. Both are very well-developed in my opinion. My hand is ever so slightly in favor of Groose, though.
 

Dragoncat

Twilit wildcat: Aerofelis
Then there's Groose, who is the stereotypical bully at the beginning and a downright asshat. I seriously thought that he would turn up to be the predecessor to Ganondorf, what with the hair, eyes, style of dress, and mannerisms. Then he turned into a sappy mess when Zelda left, and I lost what little respect I had for him. Then when he dropped down on you from above I was all like "Groose you idiot you're gonna kill us both!" But, suffice it to say, he did a total 180 after this. He accepted his role in destiny where before he outright denied it. He became very ingenious with his contraptions where before I thought he was a buffoon. And he became an extremely caring individual where before he was an a**hole. Also love it.
This...except I didnt connect him to Dorfy Dorf at all. There's a conspiracy theory floating around about him being the start of the gerudo race, but I think he just got a recessive yellow eye gene and happens to have red hair. Meh...who knows.
 

Lord Carlisle

He Who Shall Not be Named
Joined
Sep 9, 2012
Location
Florida
On one hand, there's Linebeck, which was one of the only things getting me through the game.
You know, like I said, PH was my first Zelda. When I first played it, I was amazed. I mean, now I think of it as one of the lesser Zelda titles, but the concept of temples and dungeons, transportation systems, etc. was completely new to me.

But yeah, Linebeck is what gets me through the game on the rare occassion that I replay it now.

Besides his sacrifice at the end, I thought his most epic moment was after the Ocean King offered him a wish... his reaction was awesome, and the way his theme blared from my DS... it got my blood pumping.

Hey, anyone know how I'd turn this into a poll?
 
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idk i like them both. they each have their own qualities. i would still go with linebeck though cuz you got to take your frustration out on him in the end like venting to a friend :)
 
I never felt any sympathy or connection towards Linebeck. He was a hollow shell and nothing more. PH was a very weak game in terms of narrative and Linebeck did little to alleviate that problem. His change of heart isn't manifested very effectively through on screen action or dialogue. I never felt his fate meant anything unlike Zelda in The Minish Cap, the handheld installment which touched me most. I haven't played Phantom Hourglass in three years and already I find its story forgettable in comparison to say, Twilight Princess, whose world I haven't traversed in nearly the same timespan. It's a dull game though and through.

Groose, on the other hand, was your typical coming of age bully who realized his place in life was to ally himself with Link against the forces of evil, not sully the hero's reputation. I loved his persona. He was funny, daring, cunning too as the scene with the Groosenator proved. I'll never forget the WTF moment I experienced when Groose began his sentence naming the land. I was like, "This guy is going to give Hyrule its name?". The game's crowning depiction of this energetic buddy, however, was at game's end in the Sealed Grounds. His silly shout broke the tension permeating the final Ghirahim-Demise showdown and the words he uttered to Zelda prior to returning with her and Link to their own time remain ingrained in memory forever.
 

The Dashing Darknut

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I'd say Linebeck. He's really enjoyable and was my favorite part of PH. Really he's just a coward with a big ego to make himself look like the greatest sailor, and it's enjoyable to watch. He had fun dynamics between Link and Ciela (such as when before you go to a dungeon he makes excuses and argues with Ciela. It's really enjoyable) He's just really endearing and a favorite of mine in the Zelda series. His theme is also really nice, and the fight at the end was pretty tense

I Hate BOTH of those characters Equally for the same reason;

THEY'RE BOTH A***HOLES!!
I wouldn't call them a-holes. Groose, maybe at the start, but he turned around, realized the world didn't revolve around him, and gave Link a bit of help. They're really just comic reliefs who help out Link, and have inflated egos, but they're not really a-holes.
 
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To be honest I really didn’t feel there was such a big story or arc to Linebeck, at least not compared to Groose. Maybe I should replay PH though as I’ve only ever gone through it once so my memory of everything might not be crystal clear. But as it is now, I loved everything about how dumb Groose was as a character.
 

thePlinko

What’s the character limit on this? Aksnfiskwjfjsk
First off: wow what a necro. The first replies in 10 years.

Secondly, Linebeck is my favorite character in the entire series. He’s like if Midna was actually a well written character. Sure a lot of his moments are of him being a jerk, but underneath his shell of arrogance and greed he’s really just a complete coward who just wants to be a hero. The dynamic caused by Celia calling him out on it is not only comedic, but serves to really hit home his personality, and how he genuinely wants to help but is too afraid to do so. His side story is also set up perfectly so that you can’t quite tell whether he’s incredibly dense about Jolene’s feelings or too much of a coward to face her. His climactic scene where he rescues Link despite him visually trembling in fear is perfect, a far cry from Midna’s pitiful “I was a complete asshole to you for the first half of the game but now that you saved my life I’ll just do a complete 180 in personally and act like everything’s all better.” He even got a follow up in ST, where we visit his grave behind his grandsons shop and get to see that he ended up being a decent treasure hunter after all.

I like Groose too for his own reasons, but he doesn’t even come close to Linebeck for me.
 

Vanessa28

Angel of Darkness
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Groose started out as a bully who was overly jealous at Link because of Zelda. When he eas finally able to get himself together and confronted Link about what the heck was going on he became part of the story. And not an unimportant part either. Without his groosenator built by him Link wouldn't have stand a chance against the Imprisoned. I really love his character change.

Linebeck started out as a coward with a big mouth only joining Link because of treasure. At one point in the past Linebeck was way more adventurous. According to Jolene. It was only near the end we see a change. But would this change be forever? All Linebecks seem to be more interested in money making.
However I like him as a character and like Groose he helped Link out during his adventure.

Still I think Groose made the bigger change because of everything involved. Especially Granny Impa. So to me it's Groose
 

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