Just about every video game features at least one ridiculously strong protagonist, enemy type, or final boss.
Whether it’s the annoying fowl in Untitled Goose Game, the web-slinging superhero we call Spider-Man, or a smooth-talking treasure hunter named Nathan Drake, video games give us an opportunity to see things from a unique perspective.
However, not every character is created equal; begging the question, who is the strongest video game character of all time?
Here, we’ll be ranking the most powerful video game characters from the least mighty to the most OP throughout video game history.
If you would like to receive more gaming recommendations, consider reading through our other curated lists:
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Oddjob – GoldenEye 007
Anyone who’s played the N64 classic GoldenEye 007 back in the day will be familiar with Oddjob, a deadly assassin who greatly benefits from being the shortest playable character in the game. This is due to GoldenEye 007‘s auto-aim feature, which is designed to target the enemy’s head.
Due to his short stature, Oddjob can easily dodge incoming fire and, more often than not, ends up winning a shootout.
This exploit has led many to consider Oddjob more powerful than even James Bond himself. While it’s still possible to down Oddjob in multiplayer matches, doing so requires a great deal of skill and patience.
Master Chief – Halo
For years, Master Chief has been living up to his title as a Spartan, genetically-engineered super-soldiers with advanced armor and rigorous training. This is where Master Chief draws a majority of his strength from, although you could make a case it’s his tactical way of thinking that gets the job done most of the time.
Throughout the series, we’ve seen Master Chief’s suit take a beating many times, and yet the old thing continues to keep ticking.
Embedded with cutting-edge technology, it allows him to survive falls from space and master any weapon with ease, including alien ones. Chances are he wouldn’t be so tough without it, but since we’ve never seen Master Chief without even a helmet, the suit has become pretty much synonymous with the character.
Doomguy – Doom
While he can’t be bothered to tell us his name, Doomguy has spent nearly three decades showing us he means business; and by business, we mean killing a lot of demons. Similar to Master Chief, Doomguy is a talented super-soldier who draws power from his advanced body armor and arsenal of ridiculous weaponry.
Some of his suit’s highlights include super-speed, reduced fall damage, increased weapon capacity, and enough power to punch a demon to death. As the series progresses, Doomguy has received a ton of useful upgrades, our favorite being the flamethrower debuted in Doom Eternal.
While we suspect he wouldn’t fare as well without his armor, any attempt to take it off will likely see you on the receiving end of a chainsaw.
Samus – Metroid
Samus’ highly-advanced Varia Suit is a constant reminder of her Chozo ancestry and one of the most potent weapons in not only Metroid but video games in general.
It features an exhaustive number of weapons and abilities, including missiles, laser beams, bombs, shields, and most notably, allowing Samus to roll up into a ball to traverse narrow environments.
Additionally, the Varia Suit can adapt to different climates, ensuring Samus stays alive while exploring deep space, lava-filled volcanoes, and underwater trenches. Unfortunately, Samus’ power level and survivability take a significant hit when she’s out of the suit.
Even though this holds her back from ranking higher on this list, we’re confident she can still hold her own in hand-to-hand combat.
Senator Armstrong – Metal Gear
Continuing with bad guys, Senator Armstrong is one of the most over-the-top, ridiculously strong main villains we’ve ever seen in a video game. He’s a corrupt politician with hopes of becoming the next U.S. President before and turning the entire nation into a military nightmare.
Possessing a ‘survival of the fittest’ mindset, Armstrong is willing to do whatever it takes to get in power.
His rap sheet includes playing high school football, serving in the Navy, and experimenting with ability-enhancing technology. While your encounter with him is already tough by default, things get much crazier once he merges with his nanomachines.
This causes his skin to harden, his limbs to reattach whenever severed, and his body to generate flames with every attack.
Xehanort – Kingdom Hearts
Regardless of which Kingdom Hearts game you happen to play, Xehanort is generally not the kind of person you want to mess with.
Aside from concocting an elaborate evil plan spanning more than a decade, he’s an expert manipulator capable of bending victims to his will to get them to do his bidding.
On the combat side of things, Xehanort can teleport to escape attacks, is incredibly proficient with Keyblades, and is surprisingly strong despite his old age. More impressive is the fact that he can change his appearance, possess other characters, and even steal their powers.
Sephiroth – Final Fantasy
There’s some room to debate whether or not Sephiroth is the strongest character in all of Final Fantasy. However, he’s widely accepted as the most powerful character in Final Fantasy VII and the most recognizable villain of the entire series.
Sephiroth got his start as a member of the SOLDIER program, eventually outshining all of his peers in battle.
While it’s unclear how many powers he possesses, Sephiroth is remarkably agile and has tremendous strength. What tips him off the scale is his mastery over a wide range of Materia, allowing him to cast spells and use abilities many others can’t.
Arceus – Pokémon
Based on the mythical one-horned beast the Qilin, Arceus proves that not all Pokémon need to be as cute and cuddly as say, a Pikachu.
Rumored to be responsible for the creation of the entire Pokémon universe, Arceus’ power surpasses the combined strength of the three legendaries Dialga, Palkia, and Giratina.
Add this to the fact that it has the highest stats of any Pokémon, excluding Mega evolutions, and it’s easy to see just how ridiculously strong Arceus is.
As if that weren’t enough, it’s the only known Pokémon to possess the ability Multitype, which allows the user to switch types depending on the item it’s holding in battle.
Ganondorf – The Legend of Zelda
Ganondorf didn’t end up becoming the kind of the Gerudos by his good looks, instead harnessing his innate tactical mindset in order to subjugate all those who surround him. Of course, anyone who’s ever played a mainline Zelda entry knows that political power simply isn’t enough for ol’ Ganny.
His ultimate quest is to acquire the sacred Triforce relic and use it to become the most powerful being in all the land.
He’s actually been successful in this endeavor numerous times throughout the series, allowing us to see how dangerous Ganondorf’s powers can be. By default, he’s able to wield dark magic and has a substantial amount of physical strength.
However, with the Triforce, he becomes near-immortal, capable of casting more powerful spells and, at one point, even possesses Zelda’s body to fight Link.
Bayonetta – Bayonetta
As an immortal Umbra Witch, Bayonetta has seen her fair share of space and time and even managed to survive reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere completely unscathed.
Her abilities span both physical and magical, her biggest highlights being summoning demons, shape-shifting, time manipulation, and having defeated a god.
Like many of the other characters on this list, Bayonetta is also able to pick up just about any weapon and instantly figure out how to use it to her advantage.
While this includes more obvious things like handguns and shotguns, she’s been known to fling the occasional train or two at her enemies.
Dante – Devil May Cry
As one of the twin sons of Sparda, the most powerful demon in existence, Dante is not the kind of guy you want to come across in a dark alley late at night.
While his brother Vergil may be faster, Dante is by far the stronger twin, a point that’s only heightened by his arsenal of ridiculous weapons, most notably the Rebellion sword and his Ebony and Ivory pistols.
Beyond flashy toys, we can see Dante still has a couple more tricks up his sleeve. The demon slayer can free time, rip out an enemy’s soul, and soak up a ton of damage without falling.
When things get really intense, Dante can access his full powers using his Devil Trigger, which boosts his overall power, speed, defense, and healing regeneration.
Wesker – Resident Evil
There’s no denying how much of an insane madman Albert Wesker is, even before being exposed to the prototype version of the T-virus. Initially a member of Project W, Wesker would quickly rise through the ranks and prove himself as a highly-capable and natural-born leader.
However, his combat prowess and high intelligence became corrupted after he was infected with the T-virus.
What makes Wesker so frightening is his ability to subdue foes using just his mind. He’s quite cunning and can often get his victims to do what he wants without lifting a single finger.
Combine this with superhuman physical strength and speed, and you have the perfect recipe for one of Resident Evil‘s most magnificent antagonists.
Nyx – Persona
Throughout the Persona series, there has been a wide range of formidable bosses and villains in general. However, not many of them can stack up to Nyx, who is described as death itself, personified. Appearing as a tall and slender creature with a set of wings, a long black cape, a crown on its head, and a massive sword, Nyx has an extremely intimidating presence.
Not only is it scary to look at, but Nyx is also by far the most challenging boss in Persona 3. Battling it can take up to a full hour consisting of 14 different phases.
It has a total of 25,500 HP, frequently uses buffs, becomes impervious to attacks during its Moonless Gown phase, and can even charm party members into healing it.
Deathwing – World of Warcraft
While there are a plethora of ridiculously overpowered beings in World of Warcraft lore, Deathwing stands out for both its massive size and insane raw physical power. This behemoth of a dragon isn’t only big and strong, it’s also a huge pain to even try and take down due to its entire body being covered in armor-plating.
Deathwing is able to command the skies, land, and even molten lava, which power a majority of its attacks.
Although a case could be made that some of the newer bosses in WoW give Deathwing a run for its money, it’s still one of the fiercest enemies in any video game.
Shao Kahn – Mortal Kombat
Aside from being physically intimidating, Shao Kahn is practically invincible, having only been defeated by Liu Kang and Raiden along with assistance from every elder god. Boasting both physical and magical power, Shao Kahn has mastered a wide array of moves and techniques that make him one of the toughest, most unpredictable opponents.
He possesses the ability to merge realms, bring the dead back to life, transfer souls from one body to another, and create magical shields.
When all else fails, his trusty Hammer serves as the perfect tool for smashing enemies into oblivion. Even though every fighter in Mortal Kombat can be defeated in some way or another, we wouldn’t recommend trying your luck against Shao Kahn.
The Prince – Katamari Damacy
You may be surprised to see a character as innocent-looking as the Prince from Katamari Damacy included in this list. After all, he’s nowhere near the size of his father, the King of Cosmos, nor does he have any cool abilities upon first glance. What makes him one of the most powerful video game characters around is his Katamari, which is capable of absorbing anything it touches.
At the beginning of the game, the Prince is limited to picking up small household items like pencils, batteries, and the like.
However, as the game progresses and his Katamari grows in size, the Prince starts picking up people, buildings, islands, and eventually entire planets. No one is immune to the grip of the Prince’s Katamari, and merely coming in contact with it means you can kiss the rest of your life goodbye.
Asura – Asura’s Wrath
What makes Asura stand out compared to other characters on this list is the fact that his power increases the more he becomes enraged, similar to the Hulk from Marvel comics. However, unlike the Hulk, Asura is imbued with the strength of a demigod, meaning his powers go far beyond mortal capabilities.
Even when facing off against his own kind, Asura is still unmatched. For example, after surviving an attack from another demigod in Asura’s Wrath, he’s able to retaliate with twice as much force as his opponent.
Any battle Asura is in ends up reaching the cosmic scale and his brute strength allows him to tear through enemies without any sort of strategy or game plan.
Amaterasu – Okami
If you’ve played Okami, then you know firsthand how overpowered the Sun Goddess Amaterasu truly is. Taking the form of a white dog, she has the power to alter the weather, create objects out of thin air, use telekinesis, and even slow down time at the drop of a hat.
Amaterasu’s power also extends to resurrection, with the goddess being able to bring dead plants and trees back to life in a matter of seconds.
While there’s no exact figure on the number of powers she possesses, it’s safe to say this is not the kind of deity you want to have on your bad side.
Kirby – Super Smash Bros.
Kirby may have the appearance of an adorable pink ball of fun but find yourself on the wrong side, and he can quickly become your worst nightmare. This is because he’s what’s known as a star warrior, a defender of space granted immortality and infinite power. What’s more, the Kirby we know is still relatively young, meaning his skills will only grow stronger as time goes on.
Most commonly recognized by his ability to consume pretty much any object, including enemies, Kirby’s powers go beyond just copying his foes’ fighting style. In fact, that may not even be his most impressive feats to date.
Aside from being practically indestructible, Kirby has been known to freeze time and is responsible for saving the entire world in Smash Ultimate.
Kratos – God of War
Topping our list, we have the god of war himself, Kratos. After dismantling pretty much the entire Greek pantheon in the first three God of War games, Kratos extends his warpath to Norse mythology in God of War 4. Only instead of taking down Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades, the Ghost of Sparta finds himself waging war with Odin’s son Baldur and Thor’s children, Magni and Modi.
Not only does Kratos successfully win each of these battles, he also goes on to defeat the 8 Valkyries, some of the toughest enemies in the game.
With access to the Blades of Chaos, the Leviathan Axe, and a host of powers and tools stolen from the same deities he slays, Kratos is an unstoppable force that’s not to be reckoned with. He also makes for a halfway decent father.