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Top 20 Most Iconic Video Game Characters According to Gamers

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The British Academy of Film and Television Arts, or as the kids like to call it, BAFTA, has tallied up the results of one very interesting poll that seemingly has nothing to do with film or television arts. Gamers voted to determine the most iconic video game character of all time. For such a huge title, however, only 4,000 votes were cast. That’s pretty sus if you ask me.

The list, of course, includes characters from various decades and console generations to make it somewhat fair, but the internet users were not too happy with some of the placements. The likes of Mario, Link, Pikachu, and Pacman represent the 80s. The most nostalgic era of gaming – the 90s – has Sonic, Crash Bandicoot, and Lara Croft. Agent 47, Kratos, and Nathan Drake were scooped up from the 2000s. The 2010s are represented on this list by Ellie and Arthur Morgan from The Last of Us, Arthur Morgan from Red Dead Redemption 2, and Steve from Minecraft. Naturally, the gamers did not forget to include some fresh faces, choosing two insanely popular characters from Baldur’s Gate 3 – Astarion and Shadowhart.

Lara Croft, who first appeared in 1996’s action/adventure title Tomb Raider, was voted the most iconic video game character of all time. Does she deserve a spot on this list? Undoubtedly. But is the character more iconic than some of the other toons just because 4000 people think she is? Absolutely not. This could all have been a big PR stunk by Crystal Dynamics, the developers of the modern Tomb Raider games, to hype up their upcoming projects. But it’s just a flimsy theory at this point.

The shroom-munching Italian plumber took second place, followed by another surprise – Agent 47 from the Hitman franchise. Interestingly, such iconic characters as Bayonetta, Leon Kennedy from Resident Evil, Gordon Freeman from Half-Life, Geralt from The Witcher, or Dante from Devil May Cry are nowhere to be seen.

The problem with these top lists is that you can’t please everyone, which could lead to controversial takes from people online. But in the end, there’s no such thing as bad publicity, right? Anyway, the full list looks like this:

1. Lara Croft – Tomb Raider

2. Mario – Super Mario

3. Agent 47 – Hitman

4. Sonic – Sonic the Hedgehog

5. Sackboy – LittleBigPlanet

6. Pacman – Pac-Man

7. Link – The Legend of Zelda

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Ranking all Links in the Legend of Zelda series. #zelda #zeldamemes #loz #botw #totk #oot #twilightprincess #breathofthewild #tearsofthekingdom

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8. Master Chief – Halo

9. Kratos – God of War

10. Shadowheart – Baldur’s Gate 3

11. Arthur Morgan – Red Dead Redemption 2

12. Pikachu – Pokémon

13. Steve – Minecraft

14. Solid Snake – Metal Gear Solid

15. Crash Bandicoot – Crash Bandicoot

16. Cloud Strife – Final Fantasy VII

17. Astarion – Baldur’s Gate 3

18. Kazuma Kiryu – Yakuza/Like a Dragon

19. Ellie Williams – The Last of Us

20. Nathan Drake – Uncharted