Top 5 Native American Protagonists

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There are not a lot of Native American characters. For the sake of this piece, I decided to focus on the characters that were the least offensive. 

Oftentimes when encountering Native characters in pop culture they are feathered, headdress-wearing shamans who battle through opponents with tomahawks. Suffice it to say that this does not accurately or completely express the experience of indigenous peoples and oftentimes falls into the realm of actually being incredibly insulting. 

For reference, check out many of the fighting games from the 90's that utilize these stereotypes to create nationalistic characters. 

These are the top 5 Native American characters in video games: 

Published Jul. 15th 2013
  • Matt_6564
    It's not American Indian, but there's an exclusively Alaska Native studio making a new game called Never Alone. It would be awesome to see some American Indian nations do the same.
  • Ve_6635
    Great list, but I do wish to make a little remark on Connor Kenway. The "Eagle Vision" has little to do with him being Native American. This mechanic has been a staple of the Assassin's Creed franchise since the first game (which was set in the Middle East), long before Connor's character was even conceived. The eagle motif has been a long-running thing in the series and was not something specifically designed with the character or his heritage in mind. But that's okay, it's stuff you only know when you're a longtime fan of a series and it's a nitpick. Great article, keep up the good work. :)
  • Capt. Eliza Creststeel
    Contributor
    Great stuff. Not an easy task but you did a great job with this article. Finding Native Americans represented in media period is rare enough, but video games are still behind television and film in this area. And even in 2013, we get things like Disney's Tonto. At least Graham Greene on Defiance and Lou Diamond Philips on Longmire seem to be positive steps.
  • Amanda Wallace
    Former Staff Editor
    I still haven't seen "Lone Ranger," but a friend of mine was discussing how ridiculous it was that they couldn't have cast a native actor as Tonto. I mean, I understand that Johnny Depp is part native, and if I remember correctly actually was inducted into a tribe for the role, but there are native actors that could've done the part. Like Adam Beach?
  • Jeni Harrison
    Correspondent
    Interesting and sensitively written piece.

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