Designing a character can be a tricky business. Ideally, you want to make sure people have an understanding of who the character is at a glance. However, if you want to show a character’s demeanor quickly and effectively, there is one feature that you absolutely cannot ignore: the eyebrows.
Eyebrows tell the story of the character, which is why we don’t trust Solid Snake (what are you hiding under that bandana, Snake?) A nice permanently furrowed brow will indicate just how grumpy a given character is. Open those brows up and the character appears approachable and warm. But some character designs really crank the dial on eyebrows. Why use them as an ancillary feature when they can be one of the character’s defining traits?
9 Phoenix Wright
Phoenix is the central figure in most Ace Attorney games, and the face of the franchise. This bumbling, but brilliant, lawyer is host to a large repertoire of exaggerated expressions. These, of course, help sell the quirky energy of the series. And what does an expressive character need most? Well, an expressive set of eyebrows, of course.
At this point, these eyebrows are almost certainly the bane of every Phoenix cosplayer in the world. The problem, you see, is that Phoenix’s eyebrows end in a lightning bolt shape (which would explain his electric design). These odd squiggles really help to define the character’s look. Given how much time is spent in closeups, it is safe to say that Phoenix’s eyebrows are doing a lot of heavy lifting.
When looking for fabulous brows, one of the most obvious characters to turn to is gaming’s greatest capitalist: Wario! Will you look at these bushy beauties? Wario’s mustache is the star of the show, of course. However, his giant, luscious eyebrows help tie everything together.
Even on the cover of Warioware: Smooth Moves, Wario in icon form is the nose, mustache, eyes, and eyebrows. That’s right, the eyebrows take precedence over the hat. Because, at the end of the day, Wario just isn’t Wario without those two lush brows.
Papyrus is one of Undertale’s many endearing characters. He acts as one of the first bosses, delivers some of the funniest gags in the game, and is even romanceable (ooh la la). And with those eyebrows, romance will be the first thing on your mind. Sure, this expressive skeleton has a winning smile, but he would be nothing without those wondrous brows.
Well, it is really the one eyebrow that captivates us the most. That single raised eyebrow that conveys this delightful bonehead’s mischievous character. Without the brows, it is unlikely that Papyrus would be held in the high regard he is. They add so much character to his design, give him the ability to emote, and do more than a little to melt all our hearts.
While it is true that Pac-Man in his original form was completely without eyebrows, that design is stuck in the past. Modern Pac-Man man is here and comes packing some mighty brows. These eyebrows appear to be crafted to mimic the shape of his original sprite’s gaping mouth, which is already a dazzling design flourish.
However, their appeal goes beyond that: his eyebrows, paired with his smile, make Pac-Man look absolutely maniacal. It is impossible to know what emotion they were aiming for with Pac-Man, but this bipedal ball looks absolutely amazing due exclusively to those eyebrows, and we are here for it.
5 Purple Tentacle
Day Of The Tentacle’s Purple tentacle has three design elements. One, it is a purple tentacle. Two, it has arms. Three, and I am sure you saw this coming, he is adorned with a glorious unibrow. Never before has there been a character that so clearly demonstrates the almost limitless power of a strong eyebrow.
It is through this brow, and this brow alone, that Purple Tentacle’s abundantly evil nature is demonstrated. Yet it all works brilliantly. Purple Tentacle is brimming with energy and character. It may be clothes that make the man, but it is the unibrow that makes the tentacle.
4 Lu Bu
The stalwart monster of the Dynasty Warriors franchise, Lu Bu is frequently the most dangerous opponent on the battlefield. So, it is only appropriate, then, that he has eyebrows that look like they are ready for battle themselves. The best way to describe these brows is sword-shaped.
The man’s face is doing its best imitation of an armory. Which, of course, is on-brand for this fearsome Chinese warrior. The dynasty warriors series is filled with great eyebrows; it feels like it was a focal point for the character designers. But no one can match Lu Bu’s sharp aesthetic.
Look, on a list filled with powerful eyebrows you are going to see some real statement pieces. You are going to see a lot of showstopping, giant, expressive brows. However, Kat manages to elegantly subvert the mold with her slim, crescent brows. They are even shaped like adorable, little moons, helping to sell her overall aesthetic (which seems to be vaguely cosmic).
These wisps of hair are often open and welcoming, and outwardly display Kat’s playful and friendly demeanor. They may not be showy, but they tie together what is already an incredible character design. These moon-shaped brows are simply out of this world.
If the Persona series has a mascot, then it would have to be the Machiavellian-looking attendant of the velvet room. This impish gentleman is known for his suit, his impossibly long nose, and his spindly brows.
Igor’s eyebrows splinter and diverge. They are tidy near the bridge of the nose, then grow wild and unruly as they branch outward. Almost like the roots of a tree. These eyebrows, at a glance, appear to have their own eyebrows. Pair them with wide, unblinking eyes, and you have a signature look that is bound to be remembered.
Kazuya was the hero in the first Tekken game; then, surprise, he turned out to be one of the prime antagonists of the series. Can you believe that a single person ever bought that this man could be your hero? Look at the eyebrows, people! Look at how they jaggedly slope down to create a permanent scowl.
As they say, the eyebrows are the window to the soul, and if a man can’t smile without looking malevolent then you know that soul is as dark as the night itself. There was no way this man was ever anything else but the devil himself with those eyebrows. Oh, and spoiler, he is literally the devil!
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About The Author
James Kennedy (78 Articles Published)
James is a list writer for TheGamer. He typically spends his time playing games, thinking about games, overanalyzing games, and sleeping. While he has an appreciation for all genres, he is especially interested in fighting games and RPGs. He also enjoys reading books and watching movies and will happily overanalyze those as well.