Doomguy – Doom
Doomguy is a badass. While id Software’s reboot revealed virtually no details about him other than his gender and a brief glimpse of skin color, that hardly matters. Doom isn’t a heartfelt tale with nuanced personalities and character arcs, and truthfully, we wouldn’t want it to be. The granddaddy of all shooters is about power fantasies and wish fulfillment, and through its Space Marine, it has enough of that to fuel your bloodlust into the furthest depths of hell.
The silent protagonist is a staple of first person shooters and, when used correctly, can make you feel like you’re not only part of the action, but the absolute center of it. Doomguy epitomizes this blank slate approach, and through him we become the avatar of violence, gore and everything else that makes parents groups fear video games. He doesn’t have hopes, dreams, desires or anything that we would expect to see from our heroes in film or print. But somehow, it’s easy to forget his shortcomings while we’re cutting through enemies with a space chainsaw.
Doomguy is simplistic, flat, but above all, fun, and that’s the only characteristic that matters in this medium. Whether he’s firing off the BFG directly in a demon’s face, tearing an imps’ skull in two or stabbing another with its own fang, Doomguy never fails to make us feel like a one man army.
With such a powerful silent protagonist in the center of these otherworldly firefights, who needs Gordon Freeman?