50 Most Iconic Video Game Characters of the 21st Century

Master Chief
50
Master Chief from 'Halo' series1/50

From a blocky hero beloved by millions to the most memorable monsters and heroes modern games have to offer

From a blocky hero beloved by millions to the most memorable monsters and heroes modern games have to offer

1. Master Chief

Whether you're an Xbox fan or not, Master Chief is part of that rarefied group of iconic game characters that boasts Mario, Sonic, and a small handful of others. While all of the characters on this 21st century list are beloved by fans of their respective series' and genres, Master Chief is a true pop culture icon whose significance transcends the reception of whatever game he might appear in. His faceless visage and striking silhouette are instantly recognizable to gamers and non-gamers alike, and a generation has grown up seeing him as an imposing representative of video games as a whole.

Iconic Moment: There are so many throughout the five Halo games in which the Chief has appeared, but for many, the simple exchange between the Chief and Cortana in Halo 3 when he finds her in the Flood-infected Covenant structure High Clarity is a perfect example of his heroic appeal. "You know me. When I make a promise..." he says. "You...keep it," Cortana responds.

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