Lara Croft named most iconic video games character of all time in Bafta poll

Lara Croft, star of the Tomb Raider video game series, has been named the most iconic video games character of all time in a new poll from Bafta.

The poll surveyed more than 4,000 gamers from around the world and was carried out to mark the 20th Bafta Game Awards, which take place later this month.

Croft topped the poll ahead of Mario, of the eponymous Nintendo franchise and assassin Agent 47 from the Hitman series.

Sonic the Hedgehog, Pac-Man, Link – the silent protagonist from the Legend of Zelda games – and Halo star Master Chief all made the top 10.

Mario, of the eponymous Nintendo franchise was second in the poll
Mario, of the eponymous Nintendo franchise was second in the poll (Alamy/PA)

Lara Croft first appeared in 1996 as the heroine of the Tomb Raider games, and has since then been remastered and reimagined multiple times for television, film and more video games – as well having her own live immersive experience in London.

She has been portrayed on the big screen by Angelina Jolie and Alicia Vikander.

Shelley Blond, the first voice actor for Lara Croft, said: “I had no clue when voicing the original Tomb Raider game that it would be such a global phenomenon and neither did Eidos or Core Design.

“They had only ever done children’s games before and of course they hoped it would be a success, but I think it went above and beyond any and all expectations.

“When creating the voice for Lara Croft, it came just by looking at the rough sketches I had in front of me and I took note of the fact that she was a female Indiana Jones type of character, ballsy and well spoken.

“Lara is very special to me purely because she means so much to the gamers. I love hearing stories from people around the world who played the game and channelled Lara to escape their bullies or to help them feel stronger when they wanted to come out to their loved ones.

“And most beautiful of all is hearing how gamers used to play it with their parents who are no longer with us and the sound of my voice, the music from the game and sound effects are all wrapped up in their memories of that loved one. I’m honoured to play a part in that for them.”