Our exclusive Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood video reveal of the new Alliance Mode has the G4 offices buzzing about the best assassins in video games. Assassins, guns for hire, it's hardly a new concept for video games. Protagonists and antagonists, hired to kill. Some work for the government, some work for the highest bidder, while others kill simply because it's what they love. Either way there are plenty of assassins in the video game world and we’re counting down our favorites.
The majority of these characters are notorious for being ruthless, cold-blooded killers. The body count for this list of assassins is easily within the hundreds. Each one has a different motive, style and weapon of choice. But it takes a lot more than a 9mm and a paycheck to be one of the best. Here are the Top Video Game Assassins:
Assassin is an appropriately titled video game. It centers around an assassin known quite creatively as Assassin – apparently creativity wasn't big in the 90s – who made his first kill on the Commodore Amiga in 1992. The title was re-released in 1994 as Assassin: Special Edition. Floppy disk status. Assassin, the game, wasn't held back by an over complicated story delving into the background of our protagonist. Rather, Assassin was simply about a enemy that needed to be assassinated. The figurehead in queston: Midian. And in order to be properly "taken care of" you must discover and destroy his power source.
Assassin is armed with one of the most unexpected weapons an assassin might have: a boomerang, albeit a bladed boomerange with a knifed edge. Enemies ranged from rabid dogs to canons. However, when 1994's Special Edition was released the new version got rid of dogs as enemies and replaced the beloved assassarang (we just made that up) with a laser gun. Tragic, we know. He did however keep his ultra tight, super sexy bright blue latex suit. Seriously, think Zero-Suit Samus but a dude, with dude parts...
"He comes and goes like the wind, swearing allegiance to no one. Hidden behind his wintry gaze lies a face known to none who live..."
Mysterious, right? Shadow is an assassin, a loner, a mercenary, a dog person. Shadow is a ruthless killer who would even kill his own best friend for the right price. He often leaves battle without warning, not a team player...Shadow is a playable character in Final Fantasy VI. He is always dressed in all black, and wears a hood and a mask, presumably to cover up his guyliner. Like most assassins he doesn't trust people and his only friend is Interceptor, his dog. He warns others that Interceptor will eat strangers. When not sulking and listening to The Cure he likes to kill people for money, err, gil.
Throughout FFVI he makes it clear that he's only sticking around to get his fee. But Shadow wasn't always a cut-throat assassin. He was once a thief known as Clyde (it cannot be proven that his accomplices were Binky, Pinky and Inky). He and his "partner" were train robbers. After a botched job his partner was killed, leaving Clyde heartbroken and guilty. He later left his life of crime, got married and had a baby. However, he couldn't hide his dark past – who ever can in videogames? – and so he left his life to become Shadow: The Assassin.
Some assassins might want to blend in, maybe wear something casual, inconspicuous, practical. But not Nina. She's as assassin that knows what she wants and she wants to wear a revealing purple jumpsuit with some type of crotch apparatus that makes me a little uncomfortable. Hey, that's a female assassin's prerogative.
Nina made her video game debut in the original Tekken back in 1994 and has made an appearance in every Tekken game since, she's the only female character to do so. She later stared in her own spin-off game called Death by Degrees. Unlike some assassins she doesn't rely solely on her weapons. Nina takes out her foes with sleek fighting moves and martial arts.
Nina was basically trained, since birth, to be a killer. Nina and her less hot sister Anna were taught different fighting skills by their father who often pit them against each other in battles and for his affection. Harsh. This ensured she was prepared when she was hired to assassinate Heihachi Mishima during the King of Iron Tournament. Spoiler alert: she failed. After her failure she is captured and put into cryogenic sleep for 19 years. But that doesn't detour her from entering more tournaments. She fights either to get closer to targets or to try and end the sibling rivalry she was with her sister Anna.
Desmond is a 23 year old bartender that happens to come from a family full of assassins. He was born in an assassin hideout and was raised under the strict order to never leave his desolate compound. At the age of 16, he packed his bag (clothes, money, Nirvana CD) and fled. He later told his friend Lucy that he didn't feel bad about leaving his parents, citing the ages-old rule: They just didn't understand.
Aware of the world's assassins, he lays low. In 2012 Desmond was found and forced by the Knights Templar to use a machine that simulates and extracts past or genetic memories called the Animus. Using this machine he is sent back in time into the memories of his ancestor Altair during the Crusades in hopes of finding a mysterious apple. Rumor has it one a day will keep the doctor away.
Desmond once again enters the Animus, this time with aid of friendly modern day assassins. He explores the life of yet another assassin relative, Ezio. As Ezio, Desmond learns how to be a master assassin. Our favorite of his moves is when he quietly walks up to two enemies and then spreads his arms, crucifix style, and stabs them both in the face. By the end of Assassin's Creed 2, Desmond is capable of using all his ancestors moves both in and out of the Animus. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood will be introducing a new team of assassins, all of which I'm sure will be worthy of this list.
Do you like anime? Porn? Wrestling? How about video games? Is it sometimes difficult to be able to afford all these things you love? If you answered yes to those questions then maybe life as an assassin is for you. It worked for Travis Touchdown.
Travis Touchdown is the star of No More Heroes and its sequel No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle. Travis is a 27 year old assassin who wields a beam katana, a sword based largely on ou favorite fighting too: the lightsaber. Travis became a hitman after he realized he could no longer afford video games. I feel his pain. His first hit was for a man called Helter Skelter, but after he eventually kills Helter Skelter, he becomes a level 11 assassin and must defend himself against other assassins’ attacks.
Travis' life as an assassin isn't all fun and games though. After finally getting to the final assassin boss, Dark Star, he learns that his former love is actually his half-sister. Awkward. That's just the tip of the iceberg for messed up things going on in his family life. You think Luke Skywalker had daddy issues... Travis gets caught up in seeking revenge after events of the first game. This makes his "work" No More Heroes 2 especially, shall we say, bloody? Some assassins are okay with making a little mess.
He also likes cats.
The Tenchu series takes place in 16th century feudal Japan, which is my personal favorite feudal century. The game centers around two ninjas, Rikimaru and Ayame. They were taught the way of the ninja since childhood under the vision of master Gohda. Master Gohda? Hmmm famillar that sounds...
The series documents their lives as ninja assassins. Tenchu 2: Birth of the Stealth Assassin covers their lives as teenage ninjas. Sadly, they are neither mutant nor turtles. The next games, Stealth Assassin, Fatal Shadows, Wrath of Heaven, Shadow Assassin and several others all pretty much containing the word assassin, just in case we forget, follow the ninjas on their exploits killing people all over Japan.
The Tenchu ninjas are all about stealth. "Live by Honor. Kill by Stealth" is the mantra of the game. Rikimaru, the slower of the pair, carries a ninjato, that he named "Izayoi". Ayame, smaller and quicker, employs a pair of kodachi as her main weapon. She didn't name her blades but I like to call them "the girls." Along with a grappling hook these ninjas have been assassinating foes for nearly a dozen games. Sure, some might say these games get repetitive but if killing people over and over again is boring to you then don't chose the life of a ninja assassin.
Agent 47, aka Mr. 47, aka Hitman, is the main "hero" in all four Hitman games, the Hitman movie and the Hitman novel. Somehow 47 has managed to find time to kill people in between this media blitz. His full name is 640509-040147 but you can call him 47 for short.
47 works for the International Contract Agency in the Killing People department. He is a genetically-enhanced human clone created from the DNA of several criminal masterminds. These donors are often referred to as the "Five Fathers," which sounds like title and premis for the best sitcom ever. 47 eventually finds out he was created and kills everyone involved and all the other clones, yes there were others.
Agent 47 was born in 1964. From birth he was trained to be a calculated killer and a snappy dresser. He is often seen wearing a black Italian suit. After escaping his kooky dads he gets a job as a, you guessed it, assassin. He will kill anyone he is assigned to kill, no questions asked. He has been trained to use an assortment of weapons and firearms, He prefers silent weapons like his garrote, a handheld strangulation device made of fiberwire. His weakness: bunnies.
But that's just us. So who's your favorite assassin? While you're thinking about it, head over and watch the Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood mutliplayer developer's look one more time, and think about your sneaking skills, and which assassin you'll be using. Just pick someone stealthy, because no one likes a noisy assassin.