After playing the Bayonetta demo last week, I started thinking about female video game protagonists who were as badass as Bayonetta. And make no mistake, Bayonetta is badass – a witch that can fire guns from her feet and turn her hair into giant fists and boots? Works for me. It seems as though for every Dante, Kratos, and Ryu Hayabusa, there’s at least one female video game character that can not only hang with the men, but disembowel them, too. Here are 10 of the most badass female video game characters of all time.
Tyris Flare – Golden Axe series
This Amazonian warrior doesn’t wear much when it comes to armor (or clothes for that matter), but then again, she doesn’t really need to. Seeking out Death Adder to avenge the death of her parents, Tyris can use fire-based magic and hack n’ slash wih the best of them. Throw in her taming and riding of wild beast along with her ability to summon a giant freaking fire-breathing dragon, and Tyris Flare is one Amazonian you don’t want to mess with.
Lara Croft – Tomb Raider series
Lara Croft has become nearly as iconic as Sonic and Mario, and it’s not just because of her great looks or insane body. No matter what’s thrown at this English specimen, she’s able to overcome it – traps, dinosaurs, sharks, and even the supernatural are no match for badass Lara and her two pistols. She’s like a female Indiana Jones, only more prone to violence. Tough to beat that.
Samus Aran – Metroid series
I still remember beating Metroid and recoiling in shock as Samus removed her helmet to reveal her gender, one of the all-time great twists in any medium. Like a lot of the women on this list, Samus is quite a looker. But that doesn’t mean she won’t mix it up with Mother Brain, Ridley, Kraid, space pirates, and life-sucking metroids. The ability to fire off ice and wave beamsare sweet, but there’s really nothing even close to as badass as Samus’ screw attack. Just by leaping into her enemey, she can completely obliterate him.
Rubi Malone – WET
Rubi Malone can destroy you with almost any weapon she wants – pistols, machine guns, crossbows, and swords. Even better, she can do it while running on walls, sliding on her knees, or flipping around through the air like an acrobat. Rubi will sometimes go into a rage, too, making her attacks even more devastating. Basically, she’s like a John Woo movie come to life.
Faith Connors – Mirror’s Edge
Faith may not slice and dice like her fellow women on this list, but she’s got a sense of badassery that’s all her own. As she delivers messages while avoiding the totalitarian government, Faith uses her athleticism and agility to run across rooftops, through ventilation shafts, and around all sorts of obstacles. One slip up often means certain death, but that doesn’t stop Faith from carrying out her mission. In addition to being able to negotiate almost any obstacle, Faith can also throw her fists around a bit, too – so if she doesn’t run past you, she’ll just simply knock you out.
Cammy – Street Fighter series
Once a soldier for Shadaloo – and rumored to have been created from M. Bison’s DNA – Cammy is an agent of the Delta Red task force within Britain’s MI6. Cammy’s thong leotard and camouflaged legs (what?) are unmistakable, and her Spiral Arrow attack is one of the most effective -if not annoying – techniques in the Street Fighter series. Nothing against Chun Li or Crimson Viper, but Cammy’s in-your-face, hard-nosed style of combat combined with her shadowy past make her a necessity for this list.
Rayne – BloodRayne
Rayne is half-vampire committed to killing any vampire that she encounters. The fact that she’s capable of killing vampires in the first place should tell you how lethal Rayne can be. She also takes on Nazis, biting necks and chopping off limbs in brutal fashion. So not only will Rayne kill you swiftly, she’ll make a huge, bloody mess out of the whole ordeal.
Joanna Dark – Perfect Dark series
You don’t see a lot of females as the main character in first-person shooters, but then again, you don’t find a lot of females – or males, actually – as skilled as Joanna Dark. Joanna was once a bounty hunter and successfully avenged her father’s death. Later, as an operative for the Carrington Institute, Joanna confronted aliens and the megacorporation dataDyne, using all sorts of weapons, from machine guns to rocket launchers to sniper rifles to guns with built-in X-rays. It’s such a shame that we haven’t had another Perfect Dark game, especially considering how memorably badass Joanna is.
Nariko – Heavenly Sword
Nariko, part of a warrior clan, uses her blade the “Heavenly Sword” to totally eviscerate her enemies. No matter how many men attack her, Nariko always has a chance thanks to her mastery of the godly blade and punishing combos. What really makes Nariko so badass is that although she’s just a normal woman faced with incredible responsibility and the necessity for sacrifice, she perseveres and annihilates thousands in an altruistic effort to save her people from ultimate evil.
Kitana – Mortal Kombat series
Over 10,000 years of fighting and killing will make you pretty damn tough. Kitana fights with a pair of deadly fans and has mastered them to the degree that she can literally lift her opponents into the air simply by twirling her fans. But in any Mortal Kombat game, the appeal isn’t so much the special moves but the fatalities – and Kitana’s is as vicious as any of the men’s:
Do you think I left someone off that’s more badass than these 10 women? Let me know in the comments.