If Countries Were People

In the global arena, every country has its image, but how would they look as people? That was the question that Russian artist Anastasia Bulgakova thought about for a year before starting her latest project. “I draw personifications of different countries,” she wrote. “All of them will be militant and warrior-like, with dirt and blood. Not because of some political persuasion, but simply because that what I always draw in any case, and the idea of warrior-countries gives a lot of creative freedom.”

“Every character is going to have some stereotypical attributes that I am going to use in one way or another.” From an American that’s a bit naive and idealistic to a silent Japanese guy with a suspicious smile, you’d easily recognize these ‘people’ if you met them in the street. Scroll down to check out the character designs that any game developer would be interested in, and let us know which one did you like best.


Canada is simple guy with puppy eyes. He is kind and not conflicting. Prefers to be at home and not look for any problems in others’ battles. He only fights in sports- hockey. He finds it honest and cheerful. Because of his success in hockey, he’s called “The King of ice”. Sometimes a crown appears over his head and he often dreams about future victories. Wants to believe that USA is his best friend and they are equal. USA does not see a threat in him and allows itself a cautious friendship. Of course with benefits. He usually fights Russia in hockey, and USA is also his opponent on the icy field. But he’s still friendly with everyone. Until he hears Britain’s call, that is. Canada usually wears a track suit. His weapons are a metal hockey stick and skates. Good guy.


A bit naive and idealistic, but quite vicious on the inside. Very attractive and charismatic, easily turns others to her side. Pursues her goals with no regard to morals or consequence. Her main goal is to survive- and do it with maximum comfort. She wears leather armor, since she prefers extremely long range battles with her two sniper rifles. Cybernetic arms and legs give her extreme speed in combat. She is a killer. And she likes fire. Especially it’s smell in the morning. Smells like victory.


An alternate reality France. Here the monarchy has won, and the revolution failed. He is an ancient country now, more that 1500 years old. An aristocrat and a vampire. Blood and wine is totally his style, and art, of course. The monarch’s reign is supreme, and the vampire nobility is stronger than ever. He absolutely hates revolutions, uprisings, equality and “power of the people”. Believes that democracy is just a big lie, that other countries use to fool their citizens and make them more obedient. He prefers the old-fashioned way, and there will be no “freedom and equality” under his rule, until people will grow enough to deserve it. First, they need to understand how low they have fallen, and how destructive it would be to give them any power in their current state. And when that happens, well, we shall see… This is his great compassion, as an old and wizened ruler.


This time it’s Japan, of course, and he is a man. I took some liberty in my decision since there were not too many comments. So next time, be a bit more active to get what you want ; ) Japan is a silent guy, with a suspicious smile. Likes technologies and perversions. Has some strange relationships with other countries, especially the neighbours. Ah, that sweet-sweet China… No one ever truly knows his real motives and desires (or how many “true” superforms he has), and he never answers anyway. But one thing is certain- even if he kills you, he will be extremely polite about it. Even though he likes technology, he has a real body, and the hi-tech armor is mere augmentation to his abilities and skills. He can be classified as a close-quarters fighter, but prefers speed and agility over heavy armor. He uses a spear and a tail (or tentacle?) to hold his opponents at some distance (but really, I am just sick of seeing katanas everywhere). For long range, he uses exploding spheres.


Israel is a soldier girl, in her current incarnation. She is, actually, quite ancient, but due to her always being small, she gets trampled, exiled, or destroyed, only to reborn again a few generations later. Since she always tries to remember all her wrongdoers, most of which no longer exist, she ends up being salty and angry with the world. Nevertheless, she is quite positive by nature. Building, researching and eating, is her favorite. Of course, there is always the question of her neighbors, which are actually her numerous cousins. Family is a battlefield, and Israel is forced to protect the little she has. She is sensitive and impulsive, when it comes to her relationships with other countries. The European family loves to troll her about pretty much everything, and she always responds, like the little girl she is. She wants to be accepted in the West, even though she lives the East. Tries follow all the rules, but always ends up frustrated, since she usually betrays herself in the process. She is young after all, she will learn..Despite all that, she has some very bizarre relationships with some countries. Her best friend is USA, but they can actually be called siblings, or maybe one of them is a clone? In truth, it’s still unclear which one is the real Israel, who rules who, and in turn, the rest of the world. There is a love-hate relationship with Germany. No matter how many times Germany sends her crying, Israel always comes back. There are also friends in the Far East. South Korea decided that she and Israel are BFF, since both are small and get bullied by weird siblings. Israel even trusts Korea with her lifeblood- printing shekels. Japan is a strange fan of Israel, but he is a strange fan of many things, including Russia. Lately Israel has found a vocal support in Micronesia- it’s always good to have friends in the middle of nowhere. Israel wields a big pulse rifle, and commands an army of UAVs, UGVs and drones. Since she is too small to win directly, she uses her brains to outsmart her opponents and always have the tech advantage. If possible, she will fight from afar with the her automated army and prefer defensive combat. When it’s not enough, the big rifle is probably good for something. She also has a hedgehog scout, flying on the drone. He is invisible on ground and simply weird in the sky…He loves Israel very much: )


My first ancient civilizations character. I didn’t know to which country should I attach to my character. After reading a few articles I decided that it would be Iran. Because it’s location was the largest cultural center of the middle east for a long time. You may disagree, but this is my decision. Iran is a mage (the first mage in my series). He is gloomy and not talkative, because talk is cheap, unlike gold and power. This hero is on the “gray side”. Dressed in arab style clothing with gold armor elements. Uses the golden mask to hide is face and intimidate his opponents. He has a magical lamp with a djinni, who will fulfill the mage’s wishes. It’s not like it has any other choice. In fights he mostly uses magic and diplomatic pressure. The curved saber is mostly used for executions, since djinni does most of the dirty work. He’s definitely the Lord of Sands. Many disagreed, of course, but good luck finding their remains in the desert. The djinn consists of blue flames that resemble liquid. It is sentient and wears elements of ancient armor, which are mostly broken by now. It usually appears from the lamp to protect it’s master and speaks in an strange language. It’s a typical mage and summon duo.


I was asked not to make England too stereotypical, with tea, royalty and Downton Abbey. Well, here you go then… My England is fresh, young and wild- punk culture and rock music. I also really like Joseph Gilgun, and he was originally going to be my England, like you can see in the early sketches (link below), but the design didn’t work. England is hot, proud, jealous and impulsive. He remembers how great he was, and the glorious victories he had, but that does not make him blind or stupid. You don’t survive that long, or extend so far by blind rage alone. So he is rational and calculating when it suits him, but when deep feelings are involved, the raging beast will stain history with another bloodbath, as it had happened with his sister’s rebellion. England is USA’s elder brother, although his feelings are more than just brotherly. They come from the great European family, that has descended from the late Roman Empire. USA was sent to the New World to conquer and spread her brother’s glory. Little by little, she became big and experienced, and free thinking has occurred. Some say that heresy against tea took place, and the English beast was unleashed. USA was heavily beaten, lost her limbs, but still not broken. Thanks to that accursed French vampire, England had to retreat, empty handed. But USA will be his again, one day… Oh yes, France, the stinking, perverted, bloodsucking peacock. Although, France himself is not impressed by such accusations, since he does not paint his hair red and chase after his own sister in ragged clothes for unmentionable reasons. Still, the English beast can bite, and those aren’t the stylish vampire bites that France enjoys, the old vampire knows it all too well. Likes dags, good dags. Has a smoking-drinking bulldog named Churchill. A real friend, loyal. Not like those colonial siblings. Even though it’s England and not Great Britain, I chose Union Jack’s colors, since they are more recognized. The hairstyle is wild and red, since he is a punk. I have a few versions with different heads that you can see in the link below. England prefers close combat with his fists, so he uses brass knuckles. His hands can emit hot and cold energy, but they never mix (two taps joke).


Pretty, cold, straightforward and with diplomatic skills of a sewer drain. Still, if you know her a bit, she will show you how warm and loving she can actually be. She wears a glamorous armor. Always. Since she is at war. Always. Now combat, she likes it close and personal. Especially against the odds, especially at winter, and especially if it’s heroic. She can shoot a bit, but where is the fun in that? Still, it usually clears the riffraff that is not worthy of the chilly, wintry, personal embrace. The word “pizdec” is engraved on the sword, which pretty much symbolizes the Russian life in any age and era. There is a bear with AK-47, of course, but it’s guarding the nuclear reactor back home. And the vodka. Probably a bad idea though.


“Coatlicue”- the mother serpent, the beginning and the end, a goddess from Aztec mythology. Living in Russia, I know very little about Mexico, besides a few stereotypes. So my Mexico is a drug lord- dangerous, beautiful and vicious. Slim and tall, she likes to wear classical men’s clothes, like any proper high-class crime lord. The upper body is covered in Aztec-Mayan themed tattoos. She likes being elegant, and doesn’t like to soil her hands and clothes in dirty jobs- that what the underlings are for, but if she must, then it will be bloody, showy and painful. And that’s what the axes are for. She is also a poison expert- for both healing and killing. The snake is real and poisonous. Has territorial disputes with USA, but must acknowledge her power. You could say they are cooperating (in building walls, etc.), but will probably kill each other the first chance they get.


He still is a Teutonic knight, and a big one at that ( if you can see a knight in this concept, of course). And high-tech. Extremely. Germany is considered to be clean, orderly and modern, so he wears a mechsuit. Something like an Ironman suit, but with more precision German engineering in it. And more stylish. Unlike earlier times, he mostly fights long ranged battles now, to keep the suit clean. Has unfoldable wings and thrusters on his back, like any proper mecha should.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *