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I remember watching the forum drama from a distance... I never got involved in the RPGW forums. Other webcomic forums, LiveJournal webcomics drama, sure! But somehow I didn't get dragged into those.
The first is an adorable cross between Pikachu and a Moogle, the second is Gitaroo Man, and the third is the one, the only, the legendary Sanic the Hegehog.
(I like to believe that in the world of SU, this is the actual canonical design in the video games.)
The last figure is the most important (to me personally) and often mis-labeled!
This is not, in fact, Cloud Strife, though it sure looks like him! No, this is Hero, the main character of Ian JQ's old webcomic, RPG World. RPG World was a loving parody of JRPGs, and Hero was definitely modeled on Cloud, so the mistake is quite understandable.
Ian JQ wrote and drew RPG World for many years, and it was one of my favorite webcomics throughout middle school and early high school. I even ran a tabletop roleplay based on it! Sadly he abandoned the comic just before the grand finale (on a hell of a cliffhanger, too) but the archive is still online. You can read it here!
Ian, of course, went on to become one of the directors of SU and partner of Rebecca Sugar, so an RPG World reference isn't a huge surprise--just really cute.
I might not have wizardry, but I'm still not giving up on that dream. I'll get him there, someday, somehow.