By Leah McDonald / February 14th, 2023
2018: Jade (Dragon Quest XI)
2019: Reisalin Stout (Atelier Ryza)
2021: Samus Aran (Metroid Dread)
Competition this year was fierce for Best Heroine. There were so many fantastic candidates from the plethora of games we all played here at oprainfall that it ended up being a four-way tie right until the very end. Who came out victorious from this grueling battle between our favorite leading ladies? Read on to find out.
Mio (Xenoblade Chronicles 3)
NA Release Date: July 29, 2022
Platforms: Nintendo Switch
Just as with Best Boy, I reached out to my sister to give me the ins and outs of what makes Mio a great heroine, and here’s what she had to say:
“How does one continue when they know death is inevitable? What legacy will you leave behind? With the end of her life looming literal months away from the moment we meet her, Mio already presents as an interesting, complex character. As an offseer, one of the few in Aionios who deals actively with grief and the nature of life on more than a “kill or be killed” level, her impending death and the revelations she is given early on color the story going forward. A caring, smart and strong woman, Mio will do whatever she can to see her convictions through, and will fight to save those she loves until the bitter end.” Mio more than earns her spot on the 2022 oprainfall Best Heroine list, but does she have what it takes to win it all?
Sophie Neuenmuller (Atelier Sophie 2)
NA Release Date: February 25, 2022
Platforms: PS4, Nintendo Switch, PC
Some of the best heroines are gentle, friendly, easy-going types like Sophie, who dedicates her life to helping others with alchemy, just like her grandmother once did. Don’t let her carefree attitude fool you, though: Sophie is dedicated and tenacious, determined to make sure those around her are at their best, including her best friend and mentor, Plachta, for whom she won’t stop until she can construct a body to host the woman’s spirit after she was turned into a book. Even being stuck in a dream world can’t stop Sophie, who can still make friends in uncertain circumstances – including ones involving younger versions of her dear mentor and grandmother. Can Sophie’s pure heart and dedication pull her through this four-way battle to win the 2022 oprainfall Best Heroine prize?
Tio Plato (Trails from Zero)
NA Release Date: September 27, 2022
Platforms: PS4. Nintendo Switch, PC
Seeing as fellow editor Patrick is my go-to source for all things Legend of Heroes, I asked him what makes Tio a fantastic candidate for heroine, and here’s what he had to say:
“When it comes to heroines, a little mystery can go a long way, and Tio fits this to a tee. Tio was, to put it simply, an enigma to the rest of the SSS when she first joined. She had a cool demeanor, was an Orbal Technology genius, wielded an experimental weapon like a pro, and had heightened senses no normal human should have. Tio is capable and a prodigy, but she is much more than that. She is a survivor, she has a strong will, and lived through many hardships to get where she is today. Seeing her gradually open up to the rest of her squadmates and talk about her life before the SSS was heartwarming to see. Blasting foes with her Orbal Arts was super satisfying too. Cool, cute, capable, strong-willed, and an essential member to the SSS, Tio makes the short list for our 2022 Best Heroine Award. Did she do enough to claim the top spot?”
Laeticia Aucerius (Star Ocean: The Divine Force)
NA Release Date: October 27, 2022
Platforms: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC
As crown princess of Aucerius, Laeticia is a serious, devoted, and capable leader who takes matters into her own hands in order to save her home from the brink of war. She’s a knight princess who can handle dual blades with ease, but she’s also driven to find peaceful solutions whenever possible. She’s insatiably curious and makes friends easily, and is resolute in the face of danger, especially when it comes to protecting those she loves. Her courage and quick thinking have saved the team from several binds, but she’s not so proud as to turn away a helping hand. Laeticia is a fantastic protagonist and acts as a great foil to co-lead Raymond in Star Ocean: The Divine Force, and that’s why she deserves to be 2022 oprainfall Best Heroine.
And this year’s heroine is…
Narrowly winning this four-way battle, Laeticia earns her award for being a charismatic, adorable and fierce warrior who is willing to save everyone she can, even if it means going to the ends of the universe! Her competitors were all worthy opponents, but in this year’s sea of stars, Letty was just too divine to beat!
I owe Brandon Rose a special thanks for creating the featured images for these Awards on short notice. You should check him and his works out over on Twitter.
2022 oprainfall AwardsAtelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dreambest heroineOpRainfall AwardsStar Ocean The Divine ForceThe Legend of Heroes: Trails from ZeroXenoblade Chronicles 3