Top 10 Video Games with Black Protagonists [Linwood’s Picks]

The demand for more Black Protagonists in video games has always been high and as a gamer, this is why I’ve always gravitated towards titles that allowed me to create-a-character such as many RPGs (Role Playing Games), or at the very least project myself onto a completely-covered figure in third-person or unseen throughout the story and voice-less playable lead in first-person journeys. This is one of the reasons why I became a programmer in my teenage years. While the quality of story, writing, and character development will always come first, so does immersing myself in a reality that encourages me to suspend disbelief. I want to be heavily invested, as if my identity is truly being represented in the video game.

Due to the hype of the upcoming PS5 exclusive ‘Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales’ video game, I’ve decided to list my Top Ten favorite video games centered around Black Protagonists. While there is a handful of notable DLC or Standalone titles, and playable side-characters that are Black, I feel that it is important to focus on adventures that revolve around us. I will be doing two follow-up lists and one will be regarding my Top Ten video games that allow character customization for Black Gamers, so I highly recommend that you stay tuned for it!

“The game tells the story of Marcus Reed, a former New York City gang member turned police officer. On his first night on the job after receiving a promotion to detective in the Organized Crime Unit, Reed witnesses the death of his mentor.”
“Five years ago Carl Johnson escaped from the pressures of life in Los Santos, San Andreas, a city tearing itself apart with gang trouble, drugs and corruption. Where film stars and millionaires do their best to avoid the dealers and gangbangers. Now, it’s the early ’90s. Carl’s got to go home. His mother has been murdered, his family has fallen apart and his childhood friends are all heading towards disaster. On his return to the neighborhood, a couple of corrupt cops frame him for homicide. CJ is forced on a journey that takes him across the entire state of San Andreas, to save his family and to take control of the streets.”
“The game focuses on an amateur graffiti artist known as Trane who uses graffiti and tagging as a way to protest against the corrupt dystopic city of New Radius, in a future world where freedom of expression is suppressed by a tyrannical, Orwellian city government.”
“Mafia III is an action-adventure game set in an open world environment and played from a third-person perspective, in which the player assumes control of Lincoln Clay, a Vietnam War veteran on a quest to seek revenge for his adopted family, who are murdered by local mobs.”
“Remember Me is an action-adventure video game developed by Dontnod Entertainment and published by Capcom. The game’s plot focuses on Nilin, a memory hunter working for an underground resistance called the Errorists. When the game starts, she has been stripped of nearly all her memories by mega-corporation Memorize.”
“Marlow Briggs, a smokejumper, is vacationing at a Mayan archaeological dig operated by Heng Long. His girlfriend, Eva Torres, is employed deciphering various Mayan codices. … Together, Marlow Briggs and Mask of Death set out to defeat Long, rescue Eva, and shut down the mining operation Long has established.”
“The game is set in an urban warzone in an unnamed Middle Eastern country, where 50 Cent and G-Unit have been hired to play a rap concert. After the concert, the promoter, Anwar, is unable to pay them the $10 million in cash he promised but relents after being threatened. However, instead of the cash they were promised, he gives them a diamond-and-pearl encrusted human skull as collateral. This is stolen by a paramilitary group led by the terrorist Said Kamal and his right hand woman Leila. 50 Cent (with the help of a selected G-Unit partner) decides to get it back at any cost and soon, they find out that there is a much bigger enemy than Kamal.”
“The game tells the story of Torque, a prisoner on death row for murdering his ex-wife and two children, a crime of which he claims to be innocent, saying he blacked out and cannot remember what happened.”
“The sequel to its 2014 predecessor, Watch Dogs 2 takes place in San Francisco, California. The player takes control of Marcus Holloway, a hacker and a member of the hacktivist group DedSec who aims to take down CTOS 2.0.”
“The story is one of revenge, as Heller wants to kill Alex Mercer, protagonist of the original Prototype, after his family was killed in the outbreak of the Blacklight virus.”