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Top 9 Awesome Female Characters in Video Gaming

Updated on July 23, 2012

Introduction

So male video gamers, I bet you've gotten some hand cream and tissues ready, eh? If you do, I've just clarified you're NOT a gamer, but a mere player looking for hopes to relieve your pitiful existence! No, this isn't a list of the hottest video game characters, but rather those who can kick more Bottom than Rik Mayall and Ade Edmonson. They don't have be the gung-ho kinda girl, just someone who seems to be a great addition to the video game ultraverse, and not someone competing for the "2012 I've-got-more-upskirt-shots-than-you awards". Please note also that these are my personal favourites, the ones I grew up with and the ones I respect for who they are, not what they wear. These characters may have used sex appeal in their time, but I'd like you to completely ignore that as shall I - just remember, who goes into a store thinking of breasts, except Dead or Alive players? Remember, it's called video gaming for the word "gameplay", not video drooling. And don't worry ladies, there'll also be a male counterpart Hub too. So thanks for reading, and feel free to contribute too! This my personal top 9 most awesome female characters in video gaming.

Character 9: Codename Konoko

From Oni

Konoko may seem somewhat oversexed but at the same time, she's kick ass. If you can ignore one of her selling points which is to have large breasts under a denim jacket and dress like the protagonist of Ghost in the Shell, you can find her a quite loveable character. Codename Konoko only appeared in one game which was Bungie West's Oni, who were greatly inspired by the game I just mentioned, Ghost in the Shell with its cyberpunk theme and rogue machines. Whether she's an archetype or a stereotype, is up to you. While she does have this "anything is possible" attitude and she's only a novice operative, she still makes me want to play on because she twigs evil plots quickly and seems dedicated to stopping the crooks. When you see her fully animated intro to the game, perhaps you'll agree that this is one reason why I might have to go back to seeing Anime. A butt-kicking hero that's only doing her job!

Number 8: Jen

From Primal

Jennifer Tate is a 21-year old who is trying to rescue her boyfriend (sorry fellas, she's taken), who was taken to some mysterious otherwordly.... worlds. The tattoo on her back which her boyfriend gave her means a lot more than she thinks in these new planes, and her gargoyle companion Scree seems to know a lot more about Jen's lover than she does. What makes Jen a favourite character is that she acts genuinely interested. She wants to save her boyfriend from Abaddon, the main villain, and also the troubled people of these places. Not only that, but she doesn't act like she knows this world like the back of her hand! She's shocked when she finds out Lewis (her lover) could be the champion of Abaddon, and is surprised at what she can achieve with all these new forms that she learns. So she does have some cheesy dialogue, but at least it's worth having a chuckle at from time to time. Where her hand to hand combat skills come from, I've no idea. But with some muscle present on her body, I could say that I don't need to ask. A great American Goth stereotype with a loving personality underneath it all.

Number 7: Sheila the Kangaroo

From Spyro: Year of the Dragon

While you probably just want to move on, those who knew Sheila when she debuted probably want to stay. I don't entirely remember Sheila for any great deeds she did other than kick Moneybags in the daddybags, but I think she holds a great deal of novelty factor. Sheila was the first unlockable character in the game, who you would need in order to use the hot air balloon to reach the first boss and next lobby. When you met her, you knew you'd like her for her attitude, intellect and general gameplay mechanics. Sheila has fluent mobility and control throughout the game, not to mention she can blast enemies around the room with a mighty kick! Not entirely awe-inspiring like what I'm going for, but still a great character that deserves a mention.

Number 6: Joanna Dark

From Perfect Dark (inc. Zero)

Joanna Dark is one of the defining characters in female badassery when it comes to video games. A bounty hunter who is an expert in melee combat, assassination with firearms and has some great stealth skills too. She may seem a little too soft at first, but when things happen to her father you may see where the phrase "gingers have no soul" came from - Joanna can get as merciless as she is beautiful, and knows how to show it! She wasn't much of a looker on the N64 game now known as "Perfect Dark Classic", but she was one of the few female video game characters at the time who acted seriously despite her shoddy sense of clothing. Often compared to Joanna Dark was Lara Croft, often said to be, "the daughter of James Bond and the Tomb Raider" and not just in gameplay mechanics either. She has some great dialogue, takes the plot and her colleagues seriously and acts how an agent should for the most part. Not to mention, the game is splendid.

Number 5: Jade

From Beyond Good and Evil

I think anyone who can take stories and lore seriously may come to like Jade of Beyond Good and Evil. The first thing you've got to like about her are the original intentions for Jade, which Michael Ancel said,

"We want to make her resemble a real person rather than a 'sexy action woman'."

And just because she doesn't have two huge loads with their own inventory weight, nor a thong that has its own adventure taking place in her colon, this doesn't mean she's not awesome. The second thing to note is that she's adventerous, much like Lara Croft and is willing to go to any means to expose the government's evil plots of kidnapping her orphan friends. Not to mention she has an array of tactics and hand-to-hand combat moves too. She'll take part in explosive hovercraft races, fight against the most powerful tyrannical agents and aliens and always have a way to solve the puzzles ahead. While she may look a bit too "normal" for some people, she's motivating without you even knowing it. In fact, Ubisoft public relations manager Tyrone Miller said she acts "tomboyish" and that "she has the 'girl next door' personality that players can get attuned to". And with that latter personality in mind, you want to get to know her as a friend. A great archetype that knows no bounds, I reckon you should give Beyond Good & Evil a try!

Number 4: Faith Connors

From Mirror's Edge

I suppose I should point out this list isn't really in much of an order, otherwise Jade would be number one for charm and actually resembling a female instead of a mannequin from La Senza. While I didn't totally enjoy Mirror's Edge, I still have to give it credit for a literally ass-kicking heroin. Faith Connors is what we call a "courier", similar to Jason Statham as the Transporter, only this girl does a lot more parkour and not as interesting melee combat. While I'm not too gripped by the plot nor do I truly understand it, I am OK with some of the parkour elements of the game which are indeed inspring. This is one of the few games that makes parkour look good (very much unlike Brink), though I much prefer TESIV: Oblivion for scaling rooftops and chapel steeples. Connors has some great emotional scenes going though and expresses genuine sorrow and flaming pains. She knows how to fire a gun, kick people in the fragile contents and in the end gets the job done on time. Not my favourite protagonist, but she's up there as one of them.

Number 3: Abigail Black

From Clive Barker's Jericho

I bet you didn't expect that one, huh? Abigail Black never really appealed to me when I first played Jericho, and I wasn't too fond of the parts when it was compulsory you play her and only her for a given time. But I think Black has a great personality with her butch attitude (she plays the stereotypical lesbian, as Delgado seems to remind us every five minutes) and restores goodness to slo-mo, when she can slow down time to control ghost bullets. Abigail Black is the video game equivilant of Queen Maeve without the excessive drinking, urge for sex and ability to fly, as she's the kind of person you'd want to hang out with to defend you. Unfortunately I don't have that much to say about her, but know that she's one of a kind.

Number 2: Alicia Claus

From Bullet Witch

I've recently made the review for this game, and while I critiqued the gameplay I have to say, Alicia Claus makes for a great protagonist as a gothic school librarian dominatrix archetype. In saying that, she's not the most appealing character I've come across in my sixteen or so years of gaming due to some lack of emotion. But what makes her awesome is that huge weapon of hers called the "gun rod", which is both a variety of guns and a staff in which she uses to cast huge spells like bringing down meteors, tornadoes and earthquakes. Not to mention her game is set in an apocalyptic America which is wrought with demons, after the city has been destroyed by cataclysmic events like global warming, deadly viruses and natural disasters. She does have a beauty factor but not exactly the hotness/cutsie-wootsie factor either that most people route out in Japanese video games. And I'll get round to punishing Japan very soon.... Overall, Alicia Claus is a likeable character that has badass written all over her.

Number 1: Lara Croft

From the Tomb Raider franchise

Obiviously I had to choose this one, and I agree she's seen to often. But it's like religious debates on YouTube comments - it's always going to be there. Lara Croft was a major contributor to video gaming in general, as she's the most famous video game protagonist who is female. While I will say she's over-sexed in the first few games, her appearance was changed radically later on. Even the new Tomb Raider name (simply called Tomb Raider, y'know, to avoid confusion) makes her look a bit more normal. She was known mostly for her attitude, punching tigers in the face and her thick English accent. But what made her awesome? To me, the above three things and her novelty factor. Eidos knew she was going to become a hit and they smelt money! So more games shot out and when the technology came to make boobs round and not cubic or triangular, Lara made more money. But people focussed more on visuals than gameplay, and things went downhill for a while. In the end she caught up and brought more boys to the yard with her pistols called action and kick-arsery. You have to admit, she's number 1 for a reason!

Conclusion

To end this article I have to say that females aren't portrayed all that well in video games, but here's a few which make us males simply submit to their aggression and charm. If more characters were dominant instead of jailbait, I'd reckon a lot of men would respect these characters for who they are. There's loads of annoying ones out there which make us just want every man to be like Duke Nukem, but then look how he turned out. Before I end this though, I want to warn you that there's far worse things out there in video gaming that are revealing clothes and such. Adult flash games are also promoting violence toward the gender, and it's hard to find some female-friendly ones. So next time you see a female character, think about how much she might've been through before you criticize or leer at her.

So I thank you for reading this article, I hope you're not offended by the choices I made (as I'm not trying to exploit females) and feel free to contribute to this.Who're your top 9 characters, or which ones would you replace from my list? I'd love to know your thoughts.

Thank for reading, have a pleasant day and remember: Stay safe.

This article is dedicated to every woman out there, as without you, mankind would be simple and lifeless. Also, this is for my lover, Helene Marina Jensen.

Comments

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  • earny123 profile image

    earny123 4 years ago from Castleford

    Tifa from Final Fantasy 7 in my eyes should be number 1

  • Clayton Fernandes profile image

    Clayton 4 years ago from Dubai, United Arab Emirates

    I like the female characters mentioned here. I was hoping however Miranda and ashley from Mass effect, Tifa from F.fantasy. Slyvannas and Jaina from World of warcraft etc. Ah and the chick from Appleseed even!.

  • JohnGreasyGamer profile image
    Author

    John Roberts 4 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

    Thanks you two for the comment, but I'm not looking for hotness but rather awesomeness. From what I've heard, they've all got excuses to sell their bodies and not their gameplay. I didn't choose anyone from Mass Effect because Ashley is a xenophobe, Miranda was just plain annoying. As for Tifa, I don't know her. Sylvanas and Jaina are good choices, but the former isn't in my good books, thankfully she gets killed off in MoP though. As for Jaina, she's in my Top 9 Characters of the Warcraft Universe.

    Thanks anyway and your opinions are much appreciated ^^

  • Tonyx35 profile image

    J Antonio Marcelino 4 years ago from Illinois, USA

    Nice article, What are your thoughts on Jill Valentine "Master of unlocking" from Resident Evil 1, 3, and so on. Fighting zombies and other "biohazards" since 1996.

  • JohnGreasyGamer profile image
    Author

    John Roberts 4 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

    Thanks Tonyx35 for the comment! I don't have much experience with Jill Valentine, but I remember her being tarted up in Resi 5 where you had to rip something off her boobs....? I've no idea. But I've heard many good things about her before that game, and I think she returns in Resi 6 ^^

  • GamingCowboy profile image

    GamingCowboy 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

    Might I suggest Alyx from Half-life2? She undoubtedly was a badass.

  • JohnGreasyGamer profile image
    Author

    John Roberts 4 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

    I was thinking about her too, she was a great character. I think she's like Jade from Beyond Good and Evil - more human and caring than awesome. I'd love to add her to another list, maybe in the Top 9 Sidekicks or Top 9 Companions in video games. But in all, she was an excellent character and a fine portrayal of womankind ^^

  • profile image

    stephwoo286 4 years ago from Worthing, UK

    "I didn't choose anyone from Mass Effect because Ashley is a xenophobe, Miranda was just plain annoying."

    Not a fan of either, yeah. But you know, I thought Jack / Subject Zero was about a million times more refreshing than her character design suggested. And the best of all is Shepard herself.

  • earny123 profile image

    earny123 4 years ago from Castleford

    I chose Tifa not due to hotness but her character and game play in the game as she plays a very important role and was essential to the gamer to enjoy the game.

  • OldGamer profile image

    Armin Treuer 4 years ago from Bern

    I throw in "mona" from Max Payne and of course Juli from Heavy Metal FAKK²

  • dumask profile image

    dumask 4 years ago from Arizona

    So glad Jade and Joanna dark are in here. Good read

  • JohnGreasyGamer profile image
    Author

    John Roberts 4 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

    Hi OldGamer, I've heard about Mona from one of Hubber DonkeyKongKiller's Max Payne reviews, but not Juli. I know however Mona was a great character, but not really one I've had experience with in the gaming world. Thanks though.

    Also to dumask, thanks for the comment! I think those two are some of the lesser known but much better female characters in video gaming who look good and more importantly kick arse where need be.

  • JBrumett profile image

    JBrumett 4 years ago

    Heh, looks like someone does know about Oni. That game was sweet. Beyond good and evil was sweet too. It's the only game I can remember where you didn't have to destroy stuff that was actually fun. I'd have to say Eya Brea from Parasite Eve was also a pretty sweet female character.

  • JBrumett profile image

    JBrumett 4 years ago

    Just remembered, KOS-MOS from Xenosaga series. Technically she's a Robot, BUT she did destroy and entire fleet of heavily armed star-ships by herself. So, yeah now that I remember I'd have to say she's the best. =-P

  • NornsMercy profile image

    Chace 4 years ago from Charlotte, NC

    This list kicks ass. Nice to see a list that concentrates not on how a character looks but her personality and accomplishments.

  • TNT Husky profile image

    Devlin Kendall 3 years ago from Indianapolis

    Lara croft is no surprise. It's nice to see people pointing out a character's personality as opposed to appearances. Considering that, I somewhat expected Samus Aran to be on here. I always enjoyed her character, this fearless bounty hunter isolated and alone on wild planets. I miss the older games, though. They made you feel truly alone in the first three metroid games, and that just made Samus more respectable. Rather, that's my opinion.

  • JohnGreasyGamer profile image
    Author

    John Roberts 3 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

    Thanks for the comment, TNT Husky! The biggest reason why I chose Lara was because she was one of the few femme fatales I grew up with in the gaming multiverse. Samas Aran is a famous name that comes to mind, definitely a ferocious and brave character, plus playing as a female in an FPS does feel somewhat new and obscure, but am I complaining? Not in the slightest! If I knew anything more about Samus, she'd definitely be on my list!

  • SolveMyMaze profile image

    SolveMyMaze 3 years ago

    Great Hub, John. I had a feeling Ms Croft would be number 1 when I clicked on the link. I'm glad that Joanna Dark made an appearance too. Perfect Dark on the N64 really was a gem, Christ I miss the old Rare!

  • JohnGreasyGamer profile image
    Author

    John Roberts 3 years ago from South Yorkshire, England

    Hiya SolveMyMaze, good to see you here! Aye, Joanna's one of Johnny's Angels, and it'd be blasphemy to have a list without Croft! Who would you like to have seen except for those two? ^^

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