Female video game characters often have a hard time keeping their dignity intact in digital worlds that are, more often than not, ruled and controlled by men. Nevertheless, there are those special heroines who stand out from the pack and really make a mark on the industry—and not just with their breasts, either. It's a true rarity, we know, but it does happen.

Discussions among gamers in 2012 turned to questioning sexism and male privilege in the industry more than ever before. It's a discussion that desperately needs to be had, and to celebrate, we've compiled our list of the 50 greatest heroines in gaming history.

We tried not to leave anyone too important out, but of course we're only human, so please let us know if your favorite heroine isn't on the list. Maybe we'll even give her an honorable mention.

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