They drop in through the ceiling. They crawl in through tunnels. They send their enemies to the afterlife in a silent, noiseless maneuver. They charm beautiful men and women and travel the world taking on incredible risks and pulse-pounding missions. They even have cool theme songs. They’re Jason Bourne. James Bond. They’re the people who call when everything else fails.
You know who we’re talking about – spies. Secret agents. Every kid who’s grown up in the last few decades has had dreams about seducing beautiful women in a foreign country while they’re on mission to steal the sheikh’s rubies (insert mission of choice here).
Today, we’ll be looking at some of the best spies that have been featured in video games throughout the years.
Cate Archer – No One Lives Forever
Cate Archer is a certifiable badass. On the cover, she might look like she’s going to be the usual pretty-girl agent Bond sidekick, but she’s so much more. Cate Archer is an in-field operative for UNITY, an organization whose job it is to preserve the fragile world peace that existed during the 1960s. During the game, Cate is called into action when a series of murders wreak havoc on the ranks of the agency she’s working for. When she’s on the job, Cate is a complete no-nonsense chick. She’s pretty, but she doesn’t waste too much time being the pretty girl or chasing hot guys during her travels. She’s a badass female character that doesn’t run away from a challenge, and doesn’t need the men to help her out.
Sam Fisher – Splinter Cell
Sam is one of the most iconic spies in gaming history, and for good reason. For the sheer variety of situations Sam has been in through his storied career, he deserves some kind of International Spy Lifetime award. When you want to keep things on the down-low, you send in Sam Fisher. When you want to take out the bad guys without anyone around them being wise to it, you send in Sam. Sam Fisher has saved the United States (and in turn, the world) on several different occasions. He’s a master of disguise who can climb up and down narrow corridors, dispose of bodies, evade prying patrols and steal important information without blinking an eye.
Golgo 13 – Golgo 13: Top Secret Episode
Golgo 13 is a stone-cold killer. And sometimes, when the going is rough, that is exactly the kind of guy you need. Also known as Duke Togo, Golgo is the mercenary you call when you want to make sure that the job gets done. He’s a master of spycraft and an absolute virtuoso with his M16 rifle. Golgo 13 has been in some rough, rough places over the years – overthrowing governments, causing coups, assassinating people that need to stop being alive. You know, the usual master spy-assassin stuff. Golgo 13 is the kind of guy James Bond hopes he never runs into in a dark alley.
Solid Snake – Metal Gear
Solid Snake has inspired more pop-culture and movie/television tropes than can be counted. As the quintessential spy, Solid Snake takes the cake due to the sheer scale and often ludicrous difficulty of the missions he undertakes. There’s not many spies that can lay claim to battling a tank and coming out on top. Also, it helps if your father is a major badass like Big Boss. The Metal Gear series has been at the forefront of stealth-based action over the years, and with good reason. He’s the kind of guy you definitely want on your side if a fight breaks out.
Agent 47 – Hitman
47 is, without a doubt, everyone’s favorite bald assassin. The Hitman series of games have become wildly popular not just because of their excellent gameplay mechanics, but also due to the enigmatic charm of their protagonist – Agent 47. 47 has been all over the world, and he’s killed people in every city he’s been to. Now that’s an achievement not many spies can boast about. Whether with a silent bullet to the back of the head, a garrote wire, a club or any other thing that is handy, 47 gets the job done. His trademark dual silverballers have sent many bad guys to the afterlife, and the whirlwind personal journey he’s been on through his travels just makes him even more compelling.
So, those were our picks for the most badass spies in video games. Did we miss any? Does your favorite video game spy need to be on this list? Let us know in the comments!