I sometimes wonder if developers underestimate their audience, or if they just aren't talented enough to create interesting and meaningful characters. Video games are rife with cliché dialogue and situations, and those dreaded stereotypes.
Stereotypes are unoriginal, predictable, and largely one-dimensional characters, like hip hop stars. Physical attributes and manner of dress fortify the characterization to the point where you know everything about him or her at first glance. In stereotyping, you do judge a book by its cover.
It's a lazy way to generate characters, and it severely detracts from what could be a great game.
You know these types: The slow-talking, gravelly voiced spec op commander; the wide-eyed, reluctant waif that must save the kingdom; the guy that lost his memory; the morbidly obese, lumbering, kindhearted buffoon that is powerful when angry; and the evil dude who originally was a good guy but was driven mad by some unfortunate incident.
I did an entire article on the wizened wizard, so no need to mention him again. Even though I just did.
We are all too familiar with these characters, and what's worse is that these stereotypes have been imported from TV, which stole them from the movies, which translated them from novels, and so on.