No recent wiki edits to this page.
SummaryMasks have a long and fascinating history. They've been worn for many centuries; in fact as soon as identities needed to be hidden, masks came to the fore. Masks have provided us with countless plot twists and numerous red herrings, and it's safe to say they are an integral part of most superhero's (and supervillain's) attire. As we can see below, they are worn for various reasons.
The main purpose of the mask is ultimately to hide identity; but there's so much more to it than that. While being worn, a mask defines the wearer. In a way, the wearer becomes the mask. So we see that oftentimes masks are worn not to hide identity, but to create an entirely new one. It is therefore important that the chosen mask reflects the style and personality of the wearer. We can see many examples of this very thing occurring, such as the sinister mask of Darth Vader, or the simple yet so-very-badass mask of Vega's from the Street Fighter series. Furthermore, certain professional wrestlers don masks also, for example Ray Mysterio and formerly Kane. These are further examples of the stylish form of mask.
Occasionally masks are worn by game characters for actual physical protection. However this does not mean that they can't look damn cool anyway. Take for example the protagonists from Army of Two. While their masks stop them from... well... being shot in the face, they at least make the effort to look oh-so-macho and hardcore by wearing skull-resembling masks. This is an example of
good mask use.
In the cases of superheroes and supervillains, it is generally necessary to be disguised at all times to protect the safety of the true self, or alter ego. It is for this reason Spider-man, Batman, and a whole host of others choose to wear masks.