Top 10 Shopkeepers in Games

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You see this screen quite often right?

Tons of loot gathered from your journey across those often-trudged battlegrounds and wastelands. Sometimes we take for granted the space we have, not appreciating it until it is too late. 

So what do you do with all the extra gear and random items?

Sell it for some extra cash or trade it in for a new weapon of course. What better way to do so than with those handy-dandy shopkeepers. Not many of them solely reside in shops, but the job is still the same all around.

Today I'll take a look at the Top 10 Shopkeepers in Games and see if we can't shed some light on these otherwise overlooked figures.

10. Greyor (League of Legends)

This spectral being is an interesting one. He fought in a battle in the Howling Abyss and was bound there to warn people of coming attacks. He even tells players "Avarosa herself killed me, it was a great honor. She bound my spirit here, so I could sound the horn when the Watchers returned." 

So not only was he involved with the battle as well as respected his opponents, he wants to aid other fighters by selling items. While he limits the ability for players to buy once they leave the area, Greyor provides the service which can help players push forward in their future battles. 

It's good to know that even in death, a salesman can still flourish and people will still buy without getting freaked out. Or calling Ghostbusters. 

Image source: League of Legends wikia

9. The Hungry Luma (Super Mario Galaxy)

I get it, you're already asking yourself: "How on earth is this a shopkeep?"

First off, we're not on Earth anymore, so that statement is kind of null and void. Also, you would be wrong if you didn't consider these hungry star-people to be merchants in at least one aspect.

You trade Starbits for additional levels.

You sell a valued item to receive a product or service, and this is exactly what we get when we interact with the Hungry Luma. Mario trades in all these Starbits, which act as a form of currency, by feeding the Luma till he's near exploding. Once he is full, he creates a new level or area, which acts as the service. 

See my point? Sure, I don't rate him very high because he is a one-trick pony and the variety of services are next to nil, but I still count him (and anyone like him) in the category. 

Image source: Funny Pictures

8. Drebin 893 (Metal Gear Solid 4)

I almost forgot about Drebin. Almost. One of the more personable characters in the game to talk to Snake, he offers himself up as a gun launderer by removing the ID chips from weapons, which allows anyone (mostly Snake) to use them. Drebin is one for showmanship, who has a knack for magic tricks and a very sly demeanor.

He supplied Snake with the weapons he needed and rescued his new client from certain danger on more than one occasion. Plus the dude has a pet monkey that smokes and drinks soda. How much cooler could he possibly be?

 Image Source: Metal Gear Wikia

7. The Merchant (Resident Evil 4)

Just by looking at him, you can hear the lines in your head. "What are ya buyin'?" This enigmatic salesman helps you out in your high-priority rescue mission selling you a variety of weapons. Exchanging these guns for the currency of the locals, Pesetas, he keeps Leon constantly supplied with new items. He even has his own side quest, which rewards you with a custom handgun named the Punisher.

While basically an arms dealer, The Merchant can also be considered a character in this world. While he has no official background and was last seen before the final fight of RE4, it's safe to assume he is still out there asking the deep questions like "What are ya sellin'?".

He's iconic for his catchphrases and odd shop locations. A cave, of all places, has to be the worst for flow of customers. I can only imagine what Resident Evil 4 would have been like without him. 

Image Source: Resident Evil 4 Wiki

6. The Pokemon Mart Staff (Pokemon Series)

These nameless, almost forgotten members of the Pokemon world, the Pokemart staff are a key piece of your journey to be the very best.

Selling items like Pokeballs, Potions, and Repels in bulk has served as their main staple. As the games added more features, items like color stationary, special items for your Pokemon to hold, and accessories for beauty contests have been added to their inventory.

Most say the standard greetings and words of encouragement, making them a type of support system for the trainers coming through. They also don't judge when you ask for 99 pokeballs and 99 super potions. They will never say you should lay off the harsh training, nor claim you are taking on enemies too powerful for you. They just smile, take your hard-earned cash, and tell you to have a nice day.

5. Xur Agent of the Nine (Destiny)

I'm sure this one will gain some scrutiny from people saying I'm slipping him in because of the popularity of Destiny. That isn't the case with Xur; while playing I found him fascinating as a merchant in general. (If I wanted to appease Destiny fans, I would have used Master Rahool instead and then capitalized on his new easter egg in the former Loot cave.)

With that out of the way, Xur is a complicated person to track down. He vanishes each week and appears in a new spot on the weekends. He offers up new rare items in exchange for Strange Coins, which are reasonably hard to collect, thus making the goods worthwhile. 

Having existed in a system outside of explored Space, Xur is part of a race, speculated as the Jovian, ruled by higher beings known as "The Nine". While the Nine are an quite easily described as transcendant beings that have to do with The Traveler and The Darkness, Xur is merely an agent of the Nine.

He speaks openly that he doesn't understand who the Nine are and even mentions his body is dying soon. He's an enigma that intrigues me and also he sells some pretty awesome items. 

Besides, he's like RE4's Merchant in design, and that is enough to warrant investigation. Hopefully soon Bungie will give us some more insight as to what he is rather than just some humble black market dealer. 

Thanks to DBMgamer0722 on YouTube for more information on Xur and the Nine! 

Image Source: Gamerant.com

4. The Happy Mask Salesman (Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time/Majora's Mask)

Let me preface this by saying this dude is one creepy SOB. I have spent many playthroughs trying to avoid seeing his face. Sure, he is calm and helpful on the surface, but once you piss him off, he is a very dark man.

Starting off innocently enough as a simple mask salesman, he serves as Link's way to access certain areas to progress in the game. He's nice and cheers Link on as you sell the masks for him, but if you return to shop without his money, he becomes livid and kicks you out. After the town is destroyed when Link is an adult, you no longer see him.

That is until Majora's Mask, where he is no longer just the simple salesman but rather a key point in the game. 

Said to be a traveler between dimensions, he has a knack for creeping most people out. Besides his love for masks, most of his background is rather shaded. The masks he sells are ones he's collected while travelling between dimensions. He does help Link gain some extra rupees as well as some nightmares.

I can only say I didn't rate him any higher because he didn't become much of a salesman after the few missions he gives to Link. He was limited to selling masks, and didn't offer any rare reward items beside the Mask of Truth in Ocarina. I placed him on the list in general because I find him an interesting shopkeeper. (And I'd rather not hear him say "You have met with a terrible fate" in my sleep for not placing him.)

Image Source: ZeldaWiki

3. Moneybags (Spyro)

This one came to mind as soon as I read the word shopkeeper. Moneybags did not own a shop, he didn't sell too many goods or services but he held one trait that every shopkeeper should have: A love of money!

Moneybags followed Spyro the Dragon around like a hawk, finding inaccessible areas. After he learned to unlock them, he waited to charge our hero for access. His fees became more and more outrageous as the levels progressed.

Even with his world being on the verge of destruction, he still found a way to sate his love of money. He even sported a monocle and fancy suit, most likely obtained through his extensive extortion racket. 

Moneybags served not only as a means to get rid of cold hard gems, but also became a character with a semi-fleshed-out profile. He wasn't a fighter, but he was against the bad guys. In a way, he served as a proving ground for the hero. He was essentially the force pushing Spyro to explore and collect more, expanding the limits of our scaly hero. 

Psychoanalysis aside, the bear loved money. He was greedy and only thought of himself. But he did make me go back and collect every gem in the individual levels, which made me want to 100% them. He was a proving ground to me, as I wanted to have the cash to pay him the instant he asked. It was like pushing him aside and saying "Let me through!" in a big booming voice. So satisfying. 

Image Source: Spyro Forums

2. Marcus (Borderlands series)

This one is a tough sumbitch. He values his the products he sells. In fact, he is more sure of his weapons than the survival of his customers. 

He is sadistic, shooting unruly customers who claim they have defective products is just another business transaction for him. He tests new weapons on unsuspecting victims just to get a good reading, as well as to prove to other (luckier) customers that his merchandise works effectively.

Primarily he sells to Vault Hunters, and he is rarely afraid of anything (besides losing money of course). He is someone to be respected as well as feared. (And how could you not when one of his biggest catchphrases is: "If you shop somewhere else, I'll have you killed".)

I believe Marcus could have his own back story as part of a game, the rise of a weapons merchant. It would be one hell of a story to tell. 

Image Source: Borderlands Wikia

1. Gadgetron Corporation (Ratchet and Clank series)

This one is at the top of my list for many reasons. First of all, they invented a system where you can simply buy weapons from a PDA and receive them in an instant. No worrying about hassles at customs with their heavy duty weapons.

The company enters my top-tier shopkeepers simply because of their humor about what they sell. They are off-the-wall when it comes to talking about their products, as well as the types of weapons they have created. From Decoy Glove and Morph-o-Ray (which morphs enemies into chickens) to the much-sought-after RYNO series of firearms, this company has it all. An example of this humor:

"Gadgetron has vendors conveniently located on all inhabited worlds, and also in the entirely unhabited bogs of Trachea Five. We don't really know how that one got there. Engineering blames marketing, marketing blames legal, and legal has been at a "conference" on the tropical planet of Bahamia for the last six months and they do not return our calls."

Destruction and humor, all rolled into a nice, clean package. It's been my favorite supply shop in any game series, and has made its way through all the games installments, even if just by mention alone.

So did my list sell you on my thought process? Or did you have a favorite hole-in-the-wall shop that your favorite shopkeeper resides over?

Let me know how you liked the list and let me hear some of your own. I always like to test the waters at new shops, no matter how virtual they may be. 

Image Source: Insidegamer

Published Oct. 18th 2014

Contributor

Have been writing since I can remember, have always loved reviews (gaming mostly), and have a knack for the written word.

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