The Top Ten Badass Ladies in Video Game History

By James Hawkins in Lists!
Thursday, May 20, 2010 at 9:56 am

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5. Princess Kitana Mortal Kombat Series
If you are named after a sword that Samurai use for limb-shearing, you have got to be a hardass. Good thing Princess Kitana does justice to the lofty title. As a main heroine in Mortal Kombat, Kitana is a cut-throat assassin who, much like Cammy, proves that boys don't run the show in fighting tournaments. Long recognized as an 'unbeatable' character in Mortal Kombat, her agility and mind-numbing combos set her apart from all the brawn and muscle that permeates the rest of the MK world. It probably helps too that she has an unlimited supply of sharp-ass fans that she can throw at her shivering, quaking enemies.
Unstoppable Badass Trait: Discipline. Kitana is so successful in her fighting techniques because she practices diligently. Plus, being 10,000 years old, I'm sure she's perfected a lot of punching and kicking styles.

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4. Alyx Vance Half-Life Series
If you spend your days prying Gordon Freeman out of tight situations, you deserve to be called a badass with the highest level of respect. Alyx Vance is more than just a trusty sidekick -- she is rough, smart, computer savvy, and incredibly compassionate. In fact, the ongoing revolution against the Combine would probably have failed many times if it wasn't for Alyx's quick thinking and gutsy decisions. She always came through in the many times of great peril that she and Gordon faced in their adventures. Whether it is mowing down a trudging Zombine or sniping herds of ant lions from a distant roof, Alyx Vance is like a Swiss Army Knife -- totally useful in nearly every situation and always around when needed the most. She is a brilliant example of a girl that can roll with the greatest male protagonists of all time.
Unstoppable Badass Trait: Intuition. You'd be hard pressed to find a computer Alyx can't hack, a cityscape that she can't navigate, or an enemy she can't drop.


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3. Rayne BloodRayne
Male protagonists are often made cliche by their stoicism. But Rayne is made unique by it. For many women in video games, their wide range of emotions play key roles in their makeup, but Rayne is defined by how cold she is. With a famously foul mouth and sadistic take on killing, she is most certainly the 'tomboy' of the group. But that isn't to say she's not as nuanced as the other women. In fact, what makes Rayne so massively badass is that she can be tough and vicious and unapologetic for the vast majority of the time we spend with her, but small patches of her compassionate side bleed through at different points throughout the series.
Unstoppable Badass Trait: Nefariousness. Rayne doesn't need to be a goody-goody. She likes to bust ass and humiliate everyone in her path. And the word 'sorry' will never pass her lips.


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2. Jill Valentine Resident Evil Series
Mrs. Valentine has seen every sort of evil imaginable. Years ago, while stuck inside an old mansion, she managed to survive hordes of fast, bright red zombies and leaping, stalking reptiles. Since then, she has seen betrayal, mind-control, and even more zombies -- all while on a quest to rid the world of the evil Umbrella Corporation. Unlike most in her rare situation, Jill fights with very little firepower. Oftentimes she must use her logic and sleuthing abilities to escape a quickly falling, spike-ridden ceilings and labyrinthine facilities. Somehow, after each time she's rescued, though, she manages to pick up her trusty 9mm and dive right back into the head-popping, neck-breaking action.
Unstoppable Badass Trait: Perseverance. Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield are two of the unluckiest, most under siege protagonists of all time. But they know that in a world full of evil, guns cannot be put to rest until all evil is laying in a gutter somewhere, leaking from a wound to the head.


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1. Samus Aran Metroid Series
Samus Aran made every other character on this list possible. Before her, the video game world saw nothing in regards to tough, female protagonists. For decades, Samus has run the show when it comes to space ass-kickers. For those Halo fanboys out there: John 117 hasn't even seen half the shit that Samus has. And Samus doesn't have armies of highly equipped soldiers helping her out. Whenever the universe is in being threatened by Mother Brain, you can be sure that whether she's in the Varia Suit or Zero Suit, Samus is going to be right there, destroying every robot and foiling every plan the evil brain has to offer.
Unstoppable Badass Trait: Pure Effectiveness. Samus keeps coming back again and again to whip alien tail with the tiniest chance of survival. All while towing the line between femininity and badassery.


Honorable Mentions: Ada Wong (Resident Evil), Chun Li (Street Fighter), Tifa Lockhart (Final Fantasy), Shiek (Legend of Zelda), Faith Connors (Mirror's Edge)

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