Friday Feeling returns and it’s a good one – we take a look at the best lead characters in gaming. These people are the best written and acted around, the ones that can carry a game by themselves. Who made the cut? Take a look and find out…
Jade (Beyond Good and Evil)
Jade is not your stereotypical, half-naked, sexy, video game heroine. A photo-journalist, she’s intelligent and relatable in a way few female (and male) gaming characters are. While other elements of Beyond Good and Evil are fantastical, Jade’s character keeps proceedings grounded – she has clear goals and motivations throughout. You care about Jade and want her to succeed. Plus, she looks after orphans – so she’s a great person too!
John Marston (Red Dead Redemption)
We’ve written about John Marston before but he’s well worthy of a place on this list. A complex character, he perfectly encapsulates the feeling, setting and mood of Rockstar’s epic Western. While he has done questionable things in the past, the pain this causes him is clear to see – he wants to move on and be a good man, a good father and husband but he can’t. A tragic character in many ways, he still has his edge and is arguably Rockstar’s finest creation to date.
Solid Snake (Metal Gear Solid)
Snake is a guy you’d love to share a bottle of whiskey with and talk till the early hours of the morning. There’s not many characters in gaming you’d say that about. You know he’d always have your back too – a skilled super-soldier, Snake is the best of the best; problem is, he hate’s killing but it’s all he’s good at. Snake has a vulnerability that is rare to find in gaming but it’s what makes him so fascinating. He rocks the patch and 80’s ‘tache look too.
Guybrush Threepwood (Monkey Island series)
Guybrush Threepwood is quite different from the other illustrious characters on this list – he’s not a great fighter, nor particularly smart, is a bit of a coward and can’t even grow a good beard. What he does have is a dream – to be a mighty pirate. Not just any mighty pirate – the mightiest pirate the Caribbean has ever seen. Guybrush is full of charm and sharp-wit and we always see a little of ourselves in him. He’s an underdog and we love him.
Lee Everett (The Walking Dead: The Game)
Although we pick a lot of Lee’s reactions and choices in the game, we don’t define his character – and what a character he is. Strong-minded and loyal to Clementine, who he has taken under his protection, he’ll do anything for his charge – even if it puts him at odds with others in the group. Despite this, he always tries to find the best way for everyone and rises to become a reliable and resilient leader in difficult times.
FBI Agent Francis York Morgan (Deadly Premontion)
Another character we’ve written about at length (here and here) but with good reason. You won’t find another character quite like him. Morgan is as complex a character you’ll find; intelligent, strong-willed and fast-thinking but is almost completely inept in society and socially. He’s had a troubled childhood, so to deal with that has created an imaginary friend, Zach, who acts as his confidant and adviser. He also has a passion for smoking, great cooking, coffee, punk-music and 80s films. A Low Fat Gaming legend.
Ezio (Assassin’s Creed series)
While Assassin’s Creed: Revelations may have been a game too far, Ezio had already cemented his place as one of gaming’s greatest leading men. We first met Ezio as he was being born (!) and followed him as he changed from a brash, fiery, teenage ladies-man to a fiery, charming, witty, Master Assassin ladies-man. That’s right, Ezio certainly loved the ladies. He isn’t two-dimensional though, witnessing the hanging of his father and brother, Ezio swore to avenge their deaths and committed his life to it and to finding the truth. With his mother and sister now dependent on him, Ezio always looked to help others no matter the cost and we were truly happy for him when he was able to find a life for himself.
– Dave Green. He’s on Twitter, you know – give him a follow @davidpgreen83