2016 oprainfall Awards: Best Heroine

Monday, January 23rd, 2017

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Editor’s Note: This is the first year we are running the “Best Heroine” category. Female protagonists were previously included under “Best Hero”

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Header

oprainfall AwardsBEST HEROINE

It is that time once again when we here at oprainfall pick our favorite games, characters, and music for our yearly awards. This year saw a bunch of great heroines in gaming from the crazy antics of Gamindustri’s own Neptune to the bad ass sword wielding of Sword Art Online‘s Asuna.

The question is which girls made an impression on our staff and were voted to be the best of the best, let’s find out!

Neptune (Megadimenson Neptunia V-II)

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Neptune

NA Release Date: February 2, 2016

Platform(s):PlayStation 4, Steam


First up we have Neptune from the Neptunia franchise. As one of the four Goddesses that rule over Gamindustri, Neptune heroically keeps the peace in her nation. While certainly not the hardest working Goddess, Neptune’s cheerful personality and love for her friends makes her very enduring. This is very much shown in Megadimension Neptunia V-II as her and her sister are sucked into a strange dimension. While most people would panic, Neptune just looks on the bright side of things and works hard to help out their new friend Uzume. She may enjoy pudding more than fighting, but never underestimate her resolve when the world is in need of a savior.

Aranea Highwind (Final Fantasy XV)

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Aranea Highwind

NA Release Date: November 29, 2016

Platform(s):PlayStation 4, Xbox One


Next up we have Final Fantasy XV’s very own Aranea Highwind. This free spirited mercenary stole the hearts of several of our staff members during their time with the game. Aranea is very strong willed and independent. She shows this by being a strong leader and her followers, Biggs and Wedge, would follow her to very ends of the world, no matter which side of the war she was fighting for. With all these qualities it is no wonder this bad ass woman was a favorite of our staff and fans alike.

Gwendolyn (Odin Sphere Leifthrasir)

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Gwendolyn

NA Release Date: June 7, 2016

Platform(s):PlayStation 3, PlayStaion 4, PlayStation TV, PlayStation Vita


The next heroine to receive a nomination is none other than Gwendolyn from Odin Sphere Leifthrasir. The fearless lady is never afraid to walk into battle with anyone against any odds. Though she one of the toughest ladies you will ever meet, she still grapples with issues of love and acceptance. This gives her a real human quality and is likely reason why she became so endearing to our staff.

Meiya Mitsurugi (Muv-Luv)

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Meiya Mitsurugi

NA Release Date: July 14, 2016

Platform(s): PC, Steam


Our next nominee comes from what some would consider the greatest Visual Novel ever: Meiya Mitsurugi from Muv-Luv. Though her background varies a bit depending on which Muv-Luv universe you’re in, one thing is consistent, this strong woman is both beautiful and headstrong. Never backing down from an enemy or a romantic rival, it’s no wonder she won our hearts to secure herself a nomination.

Yumi (Senran Kagura: Estival Versus)

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Yumi

NA Release Date: March 15, 2016

Platform(s): PlayStation 4, PlayStation TV, PlayStation Vita


Our final nominee is none other Yumi from Senran Kagura. Saying Yumi has a strong sense of justice is an understatement, though it is pretty cute when she calls random things evil. Always there to help her Gessen School Classmates, with a sister’s love she can come off as cold at times, but she is really one of the most caring shinobi of all. This is very much shown in Senran Kagura: Estival Versus as she must come to terms with loss, of her and her team’s grandfather and mentor Kurokage, supporting her Classmates through their grief.  Yumi is proof that sometimes the people that appear the coldest can have the warmest of hearts.

And the winner of oprainfall’s Best Heroine of 2016 is:

Neptune (Megadimenson Neptunia V-II)

2016 Oprainfall Awards | Neptune

Neptune’s always positive personality, devotion to her friends, and willingness to face any challenge has put her on top of all the other heroines on our list. She may not be the most active Goddess or the most serious, but when duty calls she’ll put down the controller and get ready for action, unless eggplants are involved.

About Steve Baltimore

Steve started with oprainfall not long after the campaign moved from the IGN forums to Facebook. Ever since, he has been fighting to give all non-mainstream RPGs a fair voice. As the site admin, he will continue to do this and even show there is value in what some would deem "pure ecchi." He loves niche games and anime more than anything... well, except maybe Neptune.

  • Mr0303

    Some great nominees for the title.

    My Heroine for 2016 is Mercedes from Odin’s Sphere Leifthrasir. She had the most character growth and the most unique story of all in the game and that is saying a lot.

    Yumi from Senran Kagura Estival Versus is a close second for me. Her subplot was the most heartfelt moment in the game, much more than the Ryona/Ryobi character arc.

    • Sylveria Shini

      Mercedes story gave me all the feels.

    • Geebun

      Small spoiler ahead for those who want to avoid it.

      When she reveals her true name at the end of her Armageddon chapter might be my favorite moment of the game, it gave me chills (even though it was kind of predictable, it’s still awesome).

    • Mr0303

      That was my favourite moment in the game as well. Her ending was bittersweet which is quite rare in media nowadays.

    • Steve Baltimore

      I need to play Odin Sphere at some point, it’s on my ever growing list lol

    • Mr0303

      You really do need to. It’s my favourite Vanillaware game and Odin knows it has some tough competition.

  • Klagmar

    Strange to see Odin Sphere on here after the intro specifically said no remakes. But I’m glad, since all 3 heroines definitely deserved a nomination.

    For my #1 I think I’d go with Phi from ZTD, or maybe Eleonora from TMS if that counts.

  • Shadowstrike

    Good she was the only choice at the end of the day.

  • My favorite heroine of 2016 has to be Arnice from Nights of Azure.

    Unless Towa from Trails of Cold Steel counts. She’s my hero at least. Just sayin’

    • Panpopo

      Towa is always relevant.

  • MusouTensei

    Nepu Nepu is always best heroine.