Now, the article title may be misleading. We’re not saying that we don’t like these guys and girls (in fact, we love them), but given their antics and scrapes with death, these game protagonists should not be walking around today.
How these characters manage to rub shoulders with death and come out with nothing more than a scrape or bruise perplexes us; but instead of questioning the meaning of life, fate and karma, let’s just have a look at who really shouldn’t have made it out of their recent adventures alive.
Nathan Drake (Uncharted series)
If there’s anyone who is notorious for being in the wrong place at the wrong time – it’s Nathan Drake. The Uncharted star has had more close calls than a chainsaw-juggling circus act. The treasure hunter always seems to find himself in the most dire and desperate of situations, but always manages to find a way out. We admire that, but sometimes we have to ask whether Nate has a pact with the devil in order to get out of some life-threatening circumstances. Falling out of planes, fighting mutated sailors and being chased down ally-ways by military trucks – Drake has faced it all.
If Drake were to kick the bucket, his most probable moment of death came when he was hanging off the edge of a cliff, dangling from a derailed train in Uncharted 2. Lo and behold, he found his way out. What a man!
Lara Croft (Tomb Raider series)
Similar to Nathan Drake, Lara Croft’s insatiable desire for treasure has put the English archaeologist in some pretty hairy situations. She’s fought tigers, skeletons, a kraken, yetis, and even a dinosaur (just absorb that information for a second). With that in tow, our favourite female dirt-digger has taken on real-world and supernatural threats, although her closest call came at the end of Tomb Raider: Underworld, where she almost met with death when trying to take down a doomsday device which would unleash the fury of Norse mythology.
Sonic (Sonic the Hedgehog series)
If speed kills, Sonic should’ve been dead a long time ago. The little blue anthropomorphic hedgehog has broken sound barriers around the many worlds he’s visited, but has anyone ever told him to slow down and enjoy the scenery?
Sonic tends to find himself (literally) running into a lot of trouble. One can only survive sprinting head-first into spikes, robots and walls for so long. Sonic has had more last-second saves than a sketchy escape artist. Between all the collapsing roofs, rising water and giant pursuing enemies, Sonic should’ve been squished somewhere.
Captain Price (Call of Duty series)
If Captain Price is a cat, he may be scratching out that ninth life very soon. Call of Duty’s on again/off again hero is either one of the luckiest or most skilful guys around, because he gets himself out of some pretty dodgy situations.
He’s taken on Russian ultra-nationalists, traitors of the US, and some of the toughest terrorists around, by rappelling through windows, leaping from helicopters and unleashing all hell on Earth. He was almost beaten to death by General Shepard at the end of Modern Warfare 2, right before Soap saved him. Whether it’s the youth and exuberance of the soldiers around him that keeps him alive is unknown; but what we do know is that this grey-haried, silver-tongued geezer has some serious kick for his old age.
Kratos (God of War series)
Kratos always seems to make his way into any list of video game badasses, and it’s entirely reasonable given what the Ghost of Sparta has survived. This guy just won’t die, as he has survived numerous battles with monsters across mythological worlds, has been sent to the underworld more times than Hades himself and has even come back after numerous attempts on his own life. Kratos infuriates the gods by persistently returning from any dark hole the gods banish him into, with his thirst for revenge always growing tenfold.
Honourable mentions: Ezio Auditore, Master Chief, Mario (too many psychedelic drugs), Jak, Duke Nukem, Isaac Clarke, Rico Rodriguez.
Who else has had some pretty close brushes with death? Anyone who you’re constantly surprised to see make it out alive?