Our Favourite Video Game Characters Of The Last Generation

Our Favourite Video Game Characters Of The Last Generation

Video games immerse us in worlds beyond our own, letting us encounter sights and sounds beyond our imaginations. But no matter the scenery, what would these worlds be without the characters we have fought alongside and grown emotionally attached to over the past eight years?

With the impending release of the PlayStation 4, today is the last day in which we here at Kotaku will look back and explore the heroes (and zeroes) of gaming’s seventh console generation. But instead of me telling you who the greatest characters of the generation are, let’s all contribute and make a master list together. After all, there are many great characters out there and no doubt they have touched us all in different ways.


To keep this list easy to read and enjoy, let’s all follow these rules.

1) Home console game characters only: Yes, I know. Portable gaming and PC gaming have had a lot of memorable characters in their own right, but this is a list celebrating the seventh home console generation, so let’s keep it to those. Of course, if a portable or PC game has been ported to the Wii, PS3, or 360, it’s totally fair game.

2) Please follow this format, including bold text:

Youtube Link of the Character in Action/Picture of the Character (No spoilers please!)

Character: The name of the character

Game: The name of the game

Platform: Which console the game is on

Why this is a great character: Why is this character so great?

Favourite memory: Your favourite memory of said character

3) Only post each character once: Be sure to see if your favourite character already has a post in the comments. If he or she already has one, feel free to reply and add your own “why this is a great character” and “favourite memory”, but don’t make a new, independent post.

4) Feel free to enter more than one character! There are lots of great characters out there; give them all a little love.

All right, now that the ground rules are out of the way, let’s get to it! Let’s celebrate the greatest characters of the last generation!

Last-Gen Heroes is Kotaku’s look back at the seventh generation of console gaming. In the weeks leading up to the launch of the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One, we’ll be celebrating the Heroes — and the Zeroes — of the last eight years of console video gaming.


  • Altair Ibn La Ahad

    Game: Assassin’s Creed, Assassin’s Creed Bloodlines, Assassin’s Creed Revelations

    Platforms: PS3, PC, Xbox, PSP(Bloodlines)

    Why? Ezio seems to get the most love, but my favorite Assassin (and character of the generation) is Altair. He had a tragic, harsh and terrible life, he fought even when he was confused and close to giving up and the novels really made me feel for him.

    Favorite Memory: Watching as the storylines progressed from him being an arrogant, albeit skilled teenager, to a powerful, wise and tragic hero.

    The moment Abass tells him his son died believing he betrayed him was particularly heart wrenching, and moments later he loses his love too.

  • Going to cheat but i don’t care 😛

    The Mass Effect Companions

    Game: Mass Effect, Mass Effect 2, Mass Effect 3

    Platforms: 360, PC, PS3

    Why? When ME2 essentially dedicated their entire game to making the characters that you recruit the basis of the game story it essentially made the companions in the ME universe something special, even after you cared about the ones in ME1. They all bring something unique to the table and while everyone has their favourites (mine are Garrus, Wrex, Liara, Mordin and Tali) i cared enough about these digital characters that i went to completionist levels to ensure their survival across all three games and cried when unavoidable deaths or deaths as a result of previous choices occurred.

    Favourite Memories:

    ME1 – Wrex Conversations regarding genophage, Liara LI scenes

    ME2 – Reunion with Archangel, Saving Legion, Citadel Side Missions

    ME3 – All of Citadel DLC, Garrus Citadel Rooftop Scene, Grunt’s “Sacrifice” in Rachni mission, Mordin’s Genophage Scene etc….

    Please i encourage people to add their favourites and scenes 🙂

  • Sean Devlin (http://lh6.ggpht.com/_RU8vXW4WLqU/S6dbvOn-csI/AAAAAAAAQSI/YFY0jYi8ZN8/Saboteur%202010-03-10%2002-28-13-95.jpg)

    The Saboteur (Pandemic Studios’ last title before closure in 2009 by Electronic Arts)

    Xbox 360 (Played on PC)

    The character just has such a personality that enables him to get away with anything in his path. He seems to start as a hopeless Irish drunk but later becomes a better person through his work and by spoling the game, experiences loss that enables him to seek revenge on a character that definitely deserves it.

    This is my favourite game of all time, sure, it wasn’t polished but the story was there and that’s enough for me to have countless hours having fun.

    My favourite memory was running along the roof tops of Paris fighting Nazi’s for what felt like an hour constantly turning and changing weapons when they would run out of ammo, I counted about 1600 kills in 40 mins and this is what I love about the game.

  • Sorry the titles aren’t in bold, it wouldn’t work on the RSS feed reader on my iPad.

    Character: Ratchet
    Game: Ratchet and Clank Trilogy, Tools of Destruction, A Crack in Time, Gladiator HD a few shorter games.
    Platform: PS3
    Why Ratchet is a great character: He’s a fluffy animal thing that can wield awesome guns, has a robot on his back that can act as a jetpack, and is just generally awesome.
    Favourite Memory: This is from Locked and Loaded on the PS2, but because it has been released on the HD trilogy remake, it’s fair game.
    Beating an arena boss without taking any damage. Those bosses are the first real ones you come across in the game, and they are real difficult to beat with your initial weapons. Then you come back later on and beat them with your immensley powerful weapons, taking no damage.

  • http://static1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120110071859/b__/bastion/images/thumb/4/43/Rucks_headshot.png/180px-Rucks_headshot.png

    Character: Rucks
    Game: Bastion
    Platform: Debut on XBLA
    Why this is a great character: The character isn’t. Not really, but the story he tells is great. Logan Cunningham put in a memorable performance as the narrator in Bastion. Bastion was already a very solid title but this made it a true stand out.
    Favourite memory: The first time you fall to your death and he says, “Just Kidding.”

  • Character: Tiny Tina
    Game:Borderlands 2
    Platform:PS3, XBOX 360, PC, OSX
    Why is Tiny Tina such a great character?:Her crazy sense of humour is just ridiculous, and her missions are stupidly fun.
    Favourite Memory: Her introduction is remarkable but when she shows us her ‘ladies’.
    “This here’s Mushy Snugglebites, and this is Felicia Sexopants. These fiiiine-ass womens could stop that train for yas, but I’ma need their badonkadonks first, and they got stoled by the bandits a few days ago. Go get ’em!”

  • Character: Trevor Phillips
    Game: Grand Theft Auto V
    Platform: Xbox 360/PS3/that PC port Rockstar are totally getting around to.
    Why this is a great character: For being not only one of the most loathsome player characters in gaming, but also for being one of the most compelling. Nothing is off the table with this guy, he’s well-acted and has a surprising amount of depth to him for a character who was basically created as a representation of people who go on killing sprees in sandbox games.
    Favorite memory: His first mission, which perfectly establishes how much of a sicko he is. It starts with him exploiting a meth-addict for sex and trying to get one over her furious boyfriend when he finds out, and just degenerates from there.

    • I know. It’s almost like there were next gen consoles being released over the next few weeks. Crazy, crazy Kotaku.

  • Character: John Marston
    Game: Red Dead Redemption
    Platform: 360/PS3
    Why this is a great character: John Marston was truly a last of its kind, an honorable outlaw in a dishonorable world who went through hell and highwater to get his family back. He was far from infallible but he always stayed true to his values till his death. This was the first Rockstar game that made me truly care for the character and he never felt like he was two different people during missions and when playing in the open world.
    Favorite memory: Riding back home to see his family at the ranch and Compass by Jamie Lidell played for the ride home. Not only did this give me chills (which a game has never done before for me) but before playing RDR my interest for video games was dormant, Afterwards i was back into it all over again.

    also have to give honorable mentions to Martin Walker, Glados, Wheatley, Artyom, the Patapons, Rayman (Origins/Legends), Joker in the Arkham series and Luigi/Mr. L in Super Paper Mario.

    • I completely agree with you, RDR is a truly great open world game. For me thou, the first character to really give me chills was Alyx Vance from Half Life 2 and the episodes. Even thou the game is completely linear I felt like I was in an open world that was closed by the Combine and Breen. Such a fantastic game, sadly, like Outcasts, Stargate Universe and of course Firefly a story ended to soon.

      • The Half Life series is amazing and completely agree that Alyx Vance was an amazing character as well. Fingers crossed the series will get some closure.

  • Why is Alyx Vance in that picture? Half-Life 2 came out in 2004, hell it was ported to the Original Xbox.

  • Sam Shepherd and John Marston (tie)
    Both were always trying to do the right thing even in horrible circumstances and faced with increasingly morrally corrupt individuals. Both travelled far and wide fighting for the people they loved and were willing to give themselves up for a better future.

    Too many amazing memories to list but both had beautifully bittersweet endings.

  • http://images4.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120919175161/halo/images/d/de/Cortana's_look_in_Halo_4.jpg
    Character: Cortana
    Game: Halo 3 & 4
    Platform: Xbox 360
    Why this is a great character: Cortana’s relationship with the chief added depth and meaning to the games. Cortana is very much an integral part of the games, she helped the chief overcome many situations. The bond that she shares with chief is not easily found in alot of games, and I enjoy witnessing the relationship of Cortana and chief changing throughout the games. I developed an emotional attachment per se to the character.
    Favourite memory: ‘Don’t make a girl a promise you can’t keep’ These are always emotional moments in the characters’ story.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhtrB52rd30
    (Watch the first minute or so)
    Character: Alyx Vance
    Game: Half Life 2
    Platform: PC, Mac OS X, Linux, XBox, XBox 360, PS3
    Why this is a great character: She was the first female game character I played with that wasn’t overly sexual, she was a deep character you felt real emotions for. Then add the fact that she is a part of quite possibly one of the best story telling games of it’s decade with a (at the time, and still to an extent) beautiful and technically amazing engine with amazingly real facial rigging. When she was hurt I felt responsible and had to help. When I was in trouble she was there to help me.
    Favourite memory:The first time I saw her in game, her face looked so real it was just unbelievable.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdUEjr6Dc9o
    Character: Lara Croft
    Game: Tomb Raider (Namely the Prequel)
    Platform: PC, XBox 360, PS3
    Why this is a great character: Crystal Dynamics took the kick ass eye candy that was Lara Croft and made her a vulnerable yet capable woman that went through hell and took you along for the ride. In her first games, Lara was an unstoppable force of English nature that took on treasure hunters, tigers and the supernatural and won. In the most recent game however, we see a young Lara new to the world trying to survive on her own in the jungles of a little known pacific island inhabited by blood thirsty cultists. I was really surprised by this game, it made me feel really vulnerable and weak, and when you first kill something, namely a Deer, you feel truly horrible for this murder, but you have to, you need to. You feel this emotion at the beginning but by the end you and Lara become accustomed to this death, and that’s what makes this amazing, you as a person experience the process of becoming a kick ass tomb raider with Lara.
    Favourite memory: Dual wielding pistols right at the end, I knew it was coming, it had to come, and it did.

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