Top 5 Protagonists This Generation

by Stephen Heller Featured 27 Comments 37 Votes 4936 Views 19/03/2012 Back to Articles

We're seven years into this generation of gaming (we couldn't believe it either), and those seven years have delivered a series of unforgettable stories. That's when we decided to name our top 5 gaming protagonists of this generation, which was actually a lot harder than we first anticipated. The rules for selection were simple; be a talking protagonist (sorry Gordon Freeman) who first appeared on the Xbox 360, PS3 or Nintendo Wii to be eligible. So join us as we remember some of our favourite characters.

John Marston - Red Dead Redemption

Cool, calm, collected and an ultimate bad arse. That's why we loved John Marston from Red Dead Redemption, his dark and mysterious past caught up with the honourable family man ideals. Not only was his tale rather remarkable, but the way he told us about his thoughts and emotions really fleshed him out as a character.

Alan Wake - Alan Wake

Alan Wake is as close as we're ever going to get to having Stephen King as a playable character in a video game. The best selling thriller writer was a joy to play through his self-titled debut, as we dealt with a recurring theme of light and darkness. Alan had a very human quality to him - he wasn't a trained soldier or a gun-toting redneck, but rather a very human and civilised author who was stuck in a nightmare that he couldn't wake up from. A compelling character that we enjoyed spending time with.

Travis Touchdown - No More Heroes

He's arrogant, he's a smart arse, and more importantly he is hilarious. Travis Touchdown is an unpredictable psycho from Suda51's No More Heroes series, who is fixated on pop-culture opportunities, and scoring with the ladies. Travis always takes things to the extreme, and that's why he is so much fun to play as.

Niko Bellic - Grand Theft Auto IV

It's not very often a video game will put you in control of a Eastern European immigrant, but that's what Rockstar Gamed did with Grand Theft Auto IV. The Niko Bellic tale is one full of trauma, hardships, depression and cynicism. Half the fun of GTA IV was learning more about Niko between missions, and to see how he would handle certain social situations. Playing as a character who just arrived in a new city, in a foreign country is a foreign concept in itself, but it really panned out, making Niko one of the most memorable protagonists of this generation.

Nathan Drake - Uncharted

Very rarely do video game characters ooze personality and charm at every turn, but Nathan Drake from the Uncharted series is without a doubt, the most likeable character in gaming. He is also the most realistic character too, showing flaws in everything he does which draws the player in. He can be a little arrogant at times, yet he is a genuine guy who becomes fixated on his goals. Drake often opens his mouth at the wrong time, and should feel right at home for any Indiana Jones fans out there. All in all, love or hate the series, Nathan Drake is one of the most human characters in gaming.

So there you have it! Don't agree with out list? Tell us your favourite protagonists this generation and why in the comments below.

By Stephen Heller - Tweet @Heller_MMGN

Link to us http://wii.mmgn.com/Articles/Top-5-Protagonists-This-Generation
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Top 5 Protagonists This Generation Comments

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I have a crush on Travis Top 5 Protagonists This Generation
Niko is the best. I actually think Drake is a bit bland. Uncharted is great because of a good balance between its story, history, supporting characters and gameplay.

On his own, Nate is pretty boring :P
I personally preferred Luis Lopez in Gay Tony over Niko.

Ghost from MW2 is also pretty well loved despite not being playable.
LMA0
+
I like Nate he reminds me of Jack O'Neill.
Hmm, haven't played any of these games...
Loving the format! Much more easier on the eyes, but normally don't you do the heading and then the picture/description after? A tad confusing.

But no Master Chief? Ezio? [MOG]
Master Chief was introduced last gen.
Though I do approve of a little Ezio love.
I woulda put in Jack from Madworld.
Tano
+

Foetoid said: I woulda put in Jack from Madworld.



Top 5 Protagonists This Generation
PAC-MAN will always be the greatest character ever (*)

Beta said:

Foetoid said: I woulda put in Jack from Madworld.




Lol i never understood the meaning of that face. He's a current-gen protagonist and a total bad-ass.
@Foetoid "You don't say"-What that photo means.

I've only played GTA IV out of all those, but from what I HAVE played I'd have liked some more characters like Kratos (although the list is from this generation only), Neku, and Geralt? Anyways, the list will never satisfy everyone and I do agree the list here is a pretty good selection. ;)

abujaffer said: @Foetoid "You don't say"-What that photo means.


No, it means "you serious?"

This is "you don't say":

God I wish meme faces died.
I like Jack from Madworld too.
no commander shepard? :P
@Pilkingbod [Facepalm] I... I'm ashamed. How could I have... *dramatic rant*

Anyways, it's generally easy to tell the difference between memes. Unless you're being a smartass and fail massively like I just did above. =_=
I have great doubt in the statement that "Nathan drake is undoubtedly the most likeable character in gaming". I think he's annoying. :P Now Murray from Monkey Island, he's gotta be up there in the most likeable characters in gaming.

I'm surprised Marcus Fenix isn't up there
He's too manly for this list.

Make up a list of the manliest men in gaming. Has someone made one already?

Foetoid said:Lol i never understood the meaning of that face. He's a current-gen protagonist and a total bad-ass.

Tano can never believe a character of such badassery can exist on the Wii so he's baffled. Goddamn PS3 fanboy.

Kenni said:

Foetoid said:Lol i never understood the meaning of that face. He's a current-gen protagonist and a total bad-ass.

Tano can never believe a character of such badassery can exist on the Wii so he's baffled. Goddamn PS3 fanboy.


Keeeeenni! Make a REAL manly man's list. Put him there.
That would require me writing up stuff. Top 5 Protagonists This Generation
Ezio [Facepalm]
Fenix is nothing more than a meathead =/

Kenni said: That would require me writing up stuff.


....god damn youuuu!!

Silence said: Fenix is nothing more than a meathead =/


.....a manly meathead.
Josh
+
This article lacks a certain
I'm gonna have to stick up for Cole McGrath not being on this list. inFamous is the one single player campaign I've finished on the PS3 (all other ones are co-op). His story was really enjoyable and well presented. Just picked up the sequel today during the HN sale.
if we can ignore the stroke inducing plot twist, i would cast a vote for Scott Shelby - at least for the first half of the game

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