Welcome to the list of the most badass, powerful, and important female characters in gaming. This list consists of my top 15 gaming females, and it was very hard to narrow it down as many characters got left off the list. Make sure to let us know how you would rank them or add and remove.
15. Bayonetta (Bayonetta Series)
Although the two games looks rough around the edges, Bayonetta has all the right curves in the right places, not afraid to flaunt off her body. I’ve never seen a character with such sex appeal and sexual confidence. Now, some will complain that Bayonetta is a prime example of the industry’s rampant over-sexualisation of female characters but screw that, Bayonetta is charming with a good sense of hilarious slap-stick humour and some of the best hack n slash gameplay in the genre. It’s fast, fluid, and the combat is very deep and challenging, as well as fun.
14. GLaDOS (Portal Series)
GLaDOS is the AI computer system that’s extremely witty with a strong taste and love for dark humour, as well as being very sarcastic and mischievous with a huge love for cake. Although evil, corrupt, and sadistic, we can’t help but love GLaDOS and forget and forgive the AI for trying to kill us in the first Portal. It was all in the name of science, right? GLaDOS had a huge impact on the gaming culture and will always be remembered for “The cake is a lie!”.
13. Cortana (Halo Series)
Master Chief’s tactical companion and love interest, Cortana, a powerful artificial intelligence hologram assistant. With a witty and playful personality, Cortana would fill us in on the backstory and events taking place in the game. As time went on, many gamers would fall for her, and watching the relationship between Master Chief and Cortana grow is definitely one of the standout points in the Halo franchise.
I wouldn’t be able to last a minute in Silent Hill, so all credit to teenager Heather Mason who dealt with the whole thing. Heather is a seemingly normal and carefree teenage girl who loves to shop and do other typical girly stuff. She is moody and loses her temper quite easily at things that frustrate her, which is quite normal for a teenager her age. This made her the perfect character to play Silent Hill 3 with, I felt very vulnerable as I felt every emotion that Heather was going though whether it was fear, stress, or exhaustion.
11. Aya Brea (Parasite Eve Series)
Miss Aya Brea is such an underrated character who I hope returns to consoles sometime again in the future. She is portrayed as a strong-willed, intelligent, and honest heroine that believes human life is priceless, invaluable, and is worth saving no matter what. Aya doesn’t boast about being a hero or possessing superhuman powers, she just does her job and because of it also tends to be pretty sarcastic, cold, and brooding. She also has a sardonic sense of humour which sets her apart from most other female characters.
10. Terra Branford (Final Fantasy VI)
While Final Fantasy VI doesn’t really have a main character, Terra is definitely most FFVI fans’ favourite character due to her story arc and backstory. Enslaved for most of her life, she was forced to know only the feelings of servitude and obligation, as well as not knowing how to express affection or have it expressed to her. Terra is confused, fearful, and an amnesiac, making her suspicious of everyone in her surroundings as she harnesses great power within.
9. Alyx Vance (Half-Life Series)
A prominent figure in the human resistance against an alien race and close friend and ally to everyone’s favourite silent protagonist, Gordon Freeman, Alyx Vance has all the right qualities to be the perfect sidekick. Her skill-set is impressive: She’s a skilled hacker, proficient with firearms, very athletic with being good at climbing, as well as knowing her way around repairing machines and vehicles. But even with all that firepower, Alyx has a fragile side to her that she tries not to show, often trying to bottle it up and keep herself composed so she can worry about helping the resistance.
8. Jade (Beyond Good and Evil)
Jade is the very definition of the word “good”, there isn’t a single bad bone in her body. Jade has a heart of gold, but that doesn’t stop her from being smart, brave, and good in a fight. Jade has it all, she’s very tomboyish with a down-to-earth demeanour, great athleticism, and adventurous spirit. Not only that, but Jade is very righteous has a great personality and set of values that she believes in. It just goes to show that a female character doesn’t need to wear skimpy clothes in order to win our hearts.
7. Samus Aran (Metroid Series)
Wait, what?! Samus is a girl? No way! That was my first reaction when I first heard the ex-solider-turned-bounty hunter that jumps around in a powerful exoskeleton suit was actually a female. Just like me, I’m sure there were many people just as shocked at the reveal, but Samus Aran has proved time and time again that she is worthy of that suit and using her cannon which can be charged to shoot powerful blasts, as well as missiles. Samus’ suit can also collapse into a sphere, a mode called the Morph Ball. She is well-known as one of the earliest female protagonists in video game history.
6. Yuna (Final Fantasy X and X-2)
Quiet, kind-hearted but strong-willed. At first glance, you wouldn’t be wrong for thinking Yuna was a damsel in distress, when in fact she is calm, focused, and willing to make the ultimate sacrifice on her life during a long pilgrimage to try to rid the world of pure evil, death, and violent destruction. Yuna’s tale is full of tragedy, hardship, and betrayal. It’s okay to admit if you cried during her journey, and you’ll be happy to know Yuna will go down as one of Final Fantasy‘s most beloved characters.
5. Chun-Li (Street Fighter Series)
The First Lady of Fighters, a prestigious title given to the most iconic female fighting game character of all-time, Chun-Li. The title was given to her not only because she kicks ass in Street Fighter, but also because she was one of the very first female characters in a fighting game, making her debut in Street Fighter II and paving the way for many more female characters to come.
4. Lara Croft (Tomb Raider Series)
You can’t make a list about gaming’s greatest females without mentioning Lara Croft, she’s a gaming icon after all, making her debut 20 years ago this October, and what a long way Lara Croft has come since then. Having gone through several transformations, her earlier iterations really sexualized the character’s design, giving Lara some extremely large proportioned assets in order to sell to gamers the idea of a female protagonist, which was a rare thing back then. It’s the modern-day Lara Croft that we know and love now, her reboot origin story humanized her and turned Lara into a more relatable person that we could root for on her long journey in trying to find herself.
3. Clementine (Telltale’s The Walking Dead Series)
Good girl gone bad Clementine may be small, but she knows how to hold her own against the zombie apocalypse. She’s seen a lot of disturbing and messed up stuff, and yet she still remains innocent and not twisted. She’s been through a lot of things a child her age shouldn’t have to be put through. she’s had to leave her family and childhood behind and quickly learn how to grow up in the cruel world she now lives in. Throughout the two games, we get to watch Clementine grow from a weak, fragile, and frightened little girl into a strong willed, determined young woman. What’s the future to hold for our dear Clementine? Well, only time can tell how long she survives in the zombie outbreak.
Ellie is as tough and feisty as they come thanks to growing up in harsh conditions, being raised in an orphanage, and then later sent to a military boarding school in the quarantine zone. So, it should come to the surprise of no one that Ellie can give it back just as good as she can take it. The young teenager is hot-headed and foul-mouthed, she’s more loyal than a dog, and she will have your back no matter the danger or situation. She’s the daughter that Joel never had and the ultimate sidekick anyone would be lucky to have.
Playing the Mass Effect series was a joy from start to finish, but the thing that made the journey even more spectacular was playing as a renegade female Commander Shepard. The fiery redhead doesn’t take shit from nobody and has nerves of steel to make the hardest sacrifices for the greater good. Some will say she’s cold-hearted and brutal, but she just does whatever it takes to get the job done. The reward for greatest female heroine goes to renegade female Commander Shepard.
This article uses a couple of fan arts without any credit to the artists.
It also seems largely ignorant of female characters prior to last generation.