Top Video Game Heroines

Updated August 5, 2020 | Infoplease Staff
by Mark Hughes

There are many heroines in video games. Damsels in distress, fierce warriors, sneaky spies, femme fatales, and more are represented. These characters were selected based on the number of games they have been in, their popularity among gamers, and the impact their presence has had on each game's story. This is by no means a comprehensive list of all heroines in video games, and it’s purely subjective.

Two of these characters have been featured in films, Lara Croft and Jill Valentine. Lara Croft is probably the most famous heroine to move between games and films. Making a video game into a movie is a difficult job. Writers must tackle merging the many hours of a video game’s storyline into an entertaining form to fit a film’s almost standard two- hour length. Many scripts are created and rejected until one seems good enough to bring to the big screen. For instance, the first script for the Tomb Raider movies was penned in 1999. It was rejected when another story was selected for the first movie, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001). Pieces of that 1999 script were later incorporated into the 2003 sequel, Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life.

Lara Croft | Samos Aran | Zelda | Princess Peach | Jill Valentine

Lara Croft
Lara Croft

British archeologist, adventurer in search of ancient treasures. She is the main character in the long-running Tomb Raider series. Lara Croft was played in both films by Angelina Jolie.

Video Games
Year Title Platform
1996 Tomb Raider PlayStation, Saturn, PC
1997 Tomb Raider 2: The Dagger of Xian PlayStation, PC
1998 Tomb Raider 3: The Adventures of Lara Croft PlayStation, PC
1999 Tomb Raider 4: The Last Revelation PlayStation, PC, Dreamcast
2000 Tomb Raider 5: Chronicles Dreamcast, PlayStation, PC
2003 Tomb Raider 6: The Angel of Darkness PlayStation 2
2006 Tomb Raider: Legend PC, PSP, XBOX, XBOX 360, GameCube, DS, GameBoy Advance
2007 Tomb Raider: Anniversary PlayStation 2, PSP, XBOX 360, Wii
2008 Tomb Raider: Underworld PC, PlayStation 2 and 3, XBOX 360, DS, Wii
Year Title Studio
2001 Lara Croft: Tomb Raider Paramount Pictures
2003 Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life Paramount Pictures

Lara Croft | Samos Aran | Zelda | Princess Peach | Jill Valentine

Samos Aran
Samos Aran

Intergalactic bounty-hunter. She is armed with and armored by a cybernetic suit. Samos battles metroids (nasty parasitic cybernetic creatures) and space pirates in her many adventures across the universe.

Video Games
Year Title Platform
1987 Metroid NES
1991 Metroid 2: Return of Samos GameBoy
1994 Super Metroid Super Nintendo
2002 Metroid Fusion GameBoy Advance
2002 Metroid Prime GameCube
2004 Metroid Prime 2: Echoes GameCube
2004 Metroid: Zero Mission GameBoy Advance
2005 Metroid Prime Pinball DS
2006 Metroid Prime Hunters DS
2007 Metroid Prime 3: Corruption Wii
2008 Super Smash Bros. Brawl Wii

Lara Croft | Samos Aran | Zelda | Princess Peach | Jill Valentine


Princess and ruler of the world Hyrule. Zelda is also known as Sheik, in Ocarina of Time, and Tetra, a pirate in The Wind Waker. She is an ally of Link and a fierce defender of her world against the evil schemes of Ganandorf.

Video Games
Year Title Platform
1987 The Legend of Zelda NES
1988 Zelda 2: The Adventures of Link NES
1992 The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past SNES
1993 The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening GameBoy, GameBoy Color
1998 The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time N64
2000 The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask N64
2001 The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons GameCube
2002 The Legend of Zelda: Master Quest GameCube
2002 The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords GameBoy Advance
2002 The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker GameCube
2003 The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask GameCube
2004 The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures GameCube
2004 The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cup GameBoy
2006 The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Wii, GameCube
2007 The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass DS

Lara Croft | Samos Aran | Zelda | Princess Peach | Jill Valentine

Princess Peach
Princess Peach

Princess Peach has also been known as Princess Toadstool. She rules the Mushroom Kingdom. When the evil Bowser attacks, Peach enlists the help of her allies, Mario & Luigi.

Video Games
Year Title Platform
1985 Super Mario Bros. NES
1988 Super Mario Bros. 2 NES
1990 Super Mario Bros. 3 NES
1991 Super Mario World SNES
1992 Mario Kart SNES
1996 Mario 64 N64
1996 Mario Kart 64 N64
1999 Mario Party N64
1999 Super Smash Bros. N64
2000 Mario Party 2 N64
2001 Super Smash Bros. Melee GameCube
2001 Mario Party 3 N64
2001 Paper Mario N64
2002 Super Mario Sunshine GameCube
2002 Mario Party 4 GameCube
2003 Mario Party 5 GameCube
2004 Mario Party 6 GameCube
2004 Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door GameCube
2004 Super Mario 64 DS DS
2005 Mario Kart DS DS
2005 Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time DS
2005 Mario Superstar Baseball GameCube
2005 Mario Party 7 GameCube
2006 New Super Mario Bros. DS
2007 Super Paper Mario Wii
2007 Super Mario Galaxy Wii
2007 Mario Party 8 Wii
2008 Super Smash Bros. Brawl Wii
2008 Mario Kart Wii Wii

Lara Croft | Samos Aran | Zelda | Princess Peach | Jill Valentine

Jil Valentine
Jill Valentine

A S.T.A.R.S. (Special Tactics and Rescue Squad) officer in the survival horror series, Resident Evil. The character of Jill Valentine (played by Sienna Guillory) only appeared in Resident Evil: Apocalypse. It should be noted that the principal character in the films is Alice, played by Milla Jovovich. The film version of Alice has multiple characteristics of other characters from the Resident Evil video games, most notably Jill Valentine and Alexia Ashford.

Video Games
Year Title Platform
1996 Resident Evil PlayStation
1999 Resident Evil 3: Nemesis PlayStation
2006 Resident Evil: Deadly Silence DS
Year Title Studio
2002 Resident Evil Constantin Film Produktion
2004 Resident Evil: Apocalypse Constantin Film Produktion
2007 Resident Evil: Extinction Constantin Film Produktion

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