Anthony-The-Rabbit-Falleroni-150x150by Anthony Falleroni

Anyone who is at all familiar with storytelling knows “the hero with a thousand faces.”  Never mind the seminal book titled as such, the phrase itself represents the archetypal hero at the core of all great and epic protagonists.  Be it ancient cave drawings, cinema, or one of the youngest mediums, video games – this principles of the classic protagonist continues to be manifest in new faces.  One problem is that unfortunately all too often that face is never female, which is ESPECIALLY the case in video games where the princess/castle thing is tradition.  However, recently one man changed that in a small way.  His three-year-old girl picked up “Donkey Kong” for the original NES and was dismayed to find you couldn’t play as the damsel.   Her father worked through the night to reprogram the game and now the hero is a heroine.

But we shouldn’t need to hack games to get more Ripleys or Sarah Connors – it should be that way from the start.  So in honor of this guy and his daughter, I urge you to play some games where the princess fights back for a change.


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The tomb raider herself, Lara Croft, burst onto the videogame scene in 1996 and has been around ever since.  She was the female answer to Indian Jones searching for ancient relics, exploring the four corners of the earth, and doing it with guns blazing.  Granted she was designed with a rather unbelievable figure that no doubt helped sell her to the predominantly male game-consumers at the time, she was no less tough for it.  And with a new reboot just released where she doesn’t look so “Barbie,” it seems Lara will be a rough and tumble role model for years to come.
Buy the newly released reboot here.


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1996 also saw the release of the horror game “Resident Evil,” which quite frankly always scared me.  But I’m a baby.  One of the game’s protagonists on the other hand was the exact opposite of me – a task force officer named Jill Valentine.  Players could choose between Chris, boring, or Jill as their zombie-fighting avatar.  Maybe Valentine isn’t as famous as Lara Croft, but Jill wasn’t as over-sexualized as Lara either.  She was just a straight up haunted-house-destroying bad-ass that literally went toe to toe with the guys.  I mean, who didn’t play as Jill?  She had more firepower than Chris and could pick locks.  Get the hell out of there, Chris!
Buy “Revelations,” the latest entry in the series to feature Jill here.


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Lastly, way back in 1986, people fought their way through an alien planet in “Metroid” with the suited hero Samus.  If you beat the game fast enough, Samus would at the end reveal her identity as a woman – and just like that, conceptions were shattered.  I assumed this space hero was a man!  Since then Samus has appeared in countless adventures, saving whole planets from evil, and today she’s one of the most iconic of all videogame heroes.  Not bad for a little human girl.  Her parents probably hacked her Nintendo too.
Buy the “Metroid Prime” trilogy here.