10 female characters not featured in their game’s cover (and 10 that are)

The Last of Us

Above: Ellie

Image Credit: Samir Torres
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The Last of Us

Roles for female video game characters are not exclusively reserved for princesses in distress or oversexualized bimbos. Strong, independent ladies like Samus Aran (Metroid) and Faith Connors (Mirror’s Edge) don’t need men to rescue them. Sadly, sexism is still a problem that affects every aspect of game design, including box art.

In a recent interview with VG24/7, The Last of Us creative director Neil Druckmann said that Sony asked him to focus on Joel (the male protagonist) for the game’s cover and push Ellie to the back. Everyone at Naughty Dog refused. Druckmann added: “I believe there’s a misconception that if you put a girl or a woman on the cover, the game will sell less.”

I browsed through some of my favorite games to see how many of them feature their lead female heroines on the cover. See the result of my search in the gallery below.