Video game characters: image of two video game players getting ready to play against each other

Video game characters: a Voice123 hit list!

Who are your favorite video game characters? Master Chief and Cortana, Joel, and Ellie, or Mario and Luigi? From sword-wielding heroes to post-apocalyptic villains, video game characters are icons. But to the 3.09 billion video gamers, these virtual characters are more than just entertainment. They’re iconic figures made real through the powerful vocal performances of talented voice actors. 

At Voice123, we understand the significant contribution a powerful voice over offers to audio and video projects. So, in this post, we’ll uncover what are video game characters, the best video game characters, the voices of the most iconic video game characters, and how you can create iconic video game characters for your projects. 

It’s time to grab your controller and strap on your armor because the real adventure is about to begin!  

What are video game characters?

Video game characters are digital avatars or personas that players control or interact with in video games, and they range from playable characters (PCs) like heroes and protagonists to non-playable characters (NPCs) like the villains and sidekicks used to enhance the game world’s mechanics. Although video game characters are fictional, they’re designed with abilities, flaws, and backstories that make them human and shape their identities.

Examples of playable characters are Mario from the Super Mario series and Master Chief from the Halo series. Whereas non-playable characters like Cortana from Halo and Ellie from Last Of Us are allies, enemies, or neutral personas that populate the game world, interacting with players and other characters. And though there are thousands of video game characters, only a few stand out as the best in the gaming industry. 

The best video game characters

Some of the best video game characters are Mario (Super Mario), Lara Croft (Tomb Raider), Master Chief (Halo), Nathan Drake (Uncharted), Cortana (Halo), The Joker (Batman), Handsome Jack (Borderland 2), Kratos (God of War), Ellie (The Last of Us), and Sonic (Sonic the Hedgehog), to name a few. From valiant plumbers to daring treasure hunters, the best video game characters have distinct personalities that make them intriguing. Whether it’s the Joker’s wicked humor, Lara Croft’s intelligence, or Master Chief’s nobility. 

But it’s really the voice acting that takes these characters to new levels, infusing them with emotional depth and authenticity. Because talented voice actors like those on Voice123 don’t just read lines for these characters – they create unique identities that make these characters available to worldwide audiences. So, here are 10 iconic video game characters and their voices. 

The voices of 10 iconic video game characters

1. Mario 

Charles Martinet voices Mario in the Super Mario franchise and game series for over thirty years, with a distinctive Italian accent that brought Mario’s adventurous spirit and unwavering enthusiasm to life. From his classic catchphrase “It’s-a-me, Mario!” to his exhilarated shouts of “Yahoo!” and “Here we go!” Chris Pratt voiced Mario in the 2023 Super Mario Bros. CGI film

2. Lara Croft 

Camilla Luddington voices Lara Croft, the archaeologist, and adventurer in Tomb Raider. Luddington’s voice perfectly blends Croft’s emotion and vulnerability, transforming her from a young, inexperienced explorer to a resilient survivor who’s inspirational to global players. Angelina Jolie and Alicia Vikander played Lara Croft in the different film versions of Tomb Raider.  

3. Master Chief 

Steve Downes voiced the Master Chief in Halo for over twenty years. From cryptic one-liners to rallying speeches on the battlefield, Downes’ deep, gravelly voice perfectly matches the super-soldiers imposing presence and heroism. Pablo Schreiber starred as the Master Chief in the Halo TV series because a younger actor was needed to represent the Chief on-screen. 

4. Nathan Drake 

Nolan North voices Nathan Drake, the charming, witty treasure hunter in the Uncharted video game series. North’s voice effortlessly conveys Drake’s quick thinking, mischievous humor, and occasional vulnerability, immersing players in Drake’s thrilling treasure hunts and daring escapes. Tom Holland stars as adventurer Nathan Drake in the film version of the game. 

5. Cortana 

Jen Taylor voices Cortana, the Master Chief’s AI companion, in Halo. Taylor’s performance aptly conveys Cortana’s intelligence, compassion, and vulnerability, highlighting her emotional depth as the perfect foil to the seasoned super-soldier. Jen Taylor’s voice was so synonymous with the character that she continued to voice the AI in the live-action Halo TV series. 

6. The Joker 

Mark Hamill voices The Joker, Batman’s most recognizable foe. Hamill’s voice brings this iconic villain to life with a mix of manic energy, dark humor, and chilling menace. Perfectly capturing the Joker’s unpredictable nature by seamlessly transitioning from gleeful laughter to cold, calculated threats. Heath Ledger and Joaquin Phoenix starred as different versions of the Joker in Hollywood films.

7. Handsome Jack 

Dameon Clarke voices Handsome Jack, the charismatic, psychopathic tyrant in Borderlands 2. Filled with smug arrogance and sly wit, Clarke’s portrayal flawlessly switches between charming and menacing tones, highlighting Jack’s egotistical nature. Clarke’s voice acting makes Handsome Jack one of the most memorable and despised villains in gaming.

8. Kratos 

Christopher Judge voices Kratos in God of War, the brutal, vengeful Spartan warrior seeking redemption in a world of gods and monsters. Judge combines a commanding presence with deep resonance to capture Kratos’ raw power and intensity. Highlighting Kratos’ emotion and complexity while showcasing his internal struggles and the burden of his past. Using his booming voice to create iconic lines like “Boy!” 

9. Ellie 

Ashley Johnson voices Ellie, the vibrant young survivor in The Last of Us. Johnson combines youthful vulnerability with a slight rasp to aptly reflect Ellie’s resilience and determination despite the harsh post-apocalyptic world she inhabits. Johnson’s voice conveys varied emotions, from innocence to grit and determination. Bella Ramsey plays Ellie in the live-action TV series

10. Sonic

Roger Craig Smith has voiced Sonic the Hedgehog in most English versions of the game and TV series since 2010. Smith adds an energetic, youthful playfulness to Sonic’s character, creating a unique, compelling personality for the blue hedgehog. Ben Schwartz voiced Sonic in the 2020 and 2022 Sonic films, creating a cocky yet confident character with the attitude of always being hundreds of steps ahead. Literally! 

How to create iconic video game characters for your projects

Video game characters: image of a young woman immersed in a video game.

Start by brainstorming ideas to create unique personality traits and unconventional abilities like Mario’s enthusiasm and Sonic’s Speed. Focus on the character’s visual aesthetics, like costumes, hairstyles, and physical features like Master Chief’s intimidating armor. Use witty dialogue, storytelling, character depth, and personal growth to build meaningful interactions between player and non-player characters and the game’s environment – like Joel and Ellie’s touching father-daughter bond. Also, consider surprising players with unexpected traits, actions, and narrative developments to create memorable gaming experiences – like the Joker’s sinister attachment to Batman.  

And finally, use the power of voice to bring your characters to life. From Cortana’s Siri-like snipe to Sonic’s youthful charm, skilled voice actors like those on Voice123 can add emotion, depth, and authenticity to any character. 

Final thoughts on video game characters

So, now that you know how to create iconic video game characters, whatever your project requirements, start by carefully considering personality traits, abilities, visual aesthetics, and storytelling elements. And be sure to brainstorm unique ideas, develop detailed backstories, and surprise players with unexpected twists to create your own global symbols of adventure, bravery, and heroism.

And whether you need Mario’s infectious cheer or Lara Croft’s resilience in your next commercial or radio ad, look no further than professional voice actors at Voice123

It’s time to level up your gaming skills and create the next new generation of character heroes and villains!


Who is the most popular video game character?

The most popular video game character is Mario from Super Mario, but other characters like Pikachu from Pokémon, Joel, and Ellie from The Last of Us, and Master Chief from Halo are also some of the most popular characters in the gaming industry.

Who is the strongest game character?

The strongest game character is Kratos from God of War, but there are other characters like Superman from the DC Universe and Goku from the Dragon Ball series, who are also some of the strongest characters in the gaming universe.

What is a gaming character called?

A gaming character is called a PC (player character), protagonist, avatar, or just a character that a player controls, and there are also NPC’s (non-player characters) that gamers interact with but do not control.


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