Infinite power: who’s the most powerful gaming character?

Power matters when it comes to gaming, whether it’s having the fastest CPU or the heftiest graphics card, or merely having a power supply capable of keeping it all ticking over sweetly. Beyond that, though, power can affect your gaming in other ways; if you have wireless mouse, there's the constant bother of keeping it fully charged so that you can be sure it won't die on you in the heat of battle.

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You’ll basically have infinite power at your fingertips; can any gaming characters beat that? We decided to work out what would happen if 16 of the most powerful characters in gaming decided to fight it out in a tournament. Who’d come out on top? Read on!

Round One

Kratos vs. Meta Knight

God of War's Kratos is a force to be reckoned with; he's a son of Zeus, a ghost of Sparta (you've seen The 300, right?) and an actual demigod who's bested monsters, gods and Titans along the way. Meta Knight, meanwhile is definitely powerful – fast and powerful with a great line in killer combos, to the extent that he's banned from some Smash Bros. Brawl tournaments – but no match for Kratos. He'd get a few decent hits in, but Kratos walks this one.

Winner: Kratos

Mewtwo vs. Kirby

The genetically-engineered Mewtwo is a guaranteed winner in the world of Pokémon – if you're good enough to capture it. Ultra fast and immensely powerful, its psychic attacks can make short work of virtually any Pokémon. Kirby, meanwhile, is a cute-looking amorphous pink blob; it's a one-sided fight, right? And it absolutely is: Kirby looks soft and squishy but he can swallow his enemies and absorb their powers, enabling him to finish off even the strongest Pokémon in no time.

Winner: Kirby

The Darkness vs. Sephiroth

Billions of years old and a destroyer of worlds, Destiny's big bad, the Darkness, is undoubtedly powerful; even its servants are worshipped as deities. But for all its power, there's something a bit vague about it; even Destiny's developers, Bungie, admit that they don't really know what it is. Final Fantasy's Sephiroth, on the other hand, is thoroughly tangible, and alongside his ultra-sharp blades are his ability to summon meteors and even trigger supernovae; assuming the Darkness even shows itself, we rather fancy Sephiroth's chances.

Winner: Sephiroth

Doomguy vs. Dante

The protagonist from Doom doesn't really have a name, but everyone knows him as Doomguy, a fully powered-up space marine with plenty of armor, huge weapons and the ability to get around really fast, as anyone who's ever played Doom deathmatch will know. And in god mode he's invincible, but that's not allowed in this match, so it's a sure thing that Devil May Cry's Dante, stealer of souls and destroyer of demon kings, will send poor Doomguy straight to Hell.

Winner: Dante

Goku vs. Superman

Dragon Ball Z's main protagonist, Goku, is all kinds of powerful: super speed and strength, enhanced reflexes, flight and teleportation are just some of his abilities. And we know all about Superman; even when he's had his abilities slightly hobbled to make him a worthwhile gaming character he's still mighty mighty. The two are pretty evenly matched, but when it comes down to it we suspect lovable old Supes just doesn't have the killer instinct; this one's Goku's.

Winner: Goku

Darkseid vs. Bayonetta

Darkseid vs. Bayonetta

Grumpy old Darkseid is probably the biggest and baddest villain in the DC Comics universe; he doesn't just want to rule the world, he wants to rule all of existence and he has the means to do it. In DC Universe Online he's a challenging boss who takes a lot of beating, but he's a bit of a brawler and ultimately beatable. Bayonetta's a mysterious Umbra Witch with guns in her shoes, amazing fighting skills and a great line in torture attacks, and she thinks nothing of giving gangs of angels a good thrashing; she'll run rings around the heavyweight Darkseid.

Winner: Bayonetta

The star of The Legend of Zelda has a good heart and plenty of bravery, along with the Master Sword and a Hero's Shield, and he's triumphed against Ganon and saved the kingdom of Hyrule on numerous occasions. Asura – of Asura's Wrath fame – is a revenge-driven demigod who can take a hit from a god without even flinching, and ultimately punch planets in half. Much as we all love Link, we doubt he has enough heart containers to soak up what Asura's bringing to this fight.

Winner: Asura

Mario vs. The Prince

Good old Mario; like Link, he's a good-hearted type who's bested his own nemesis, Bowser, plenty of times over the years. Give him a mushroom and some power-ups and he's ready for anything. The Prince from Katamari Damacy isn't really a fighter at all, but when he starts his Katamari rolling that doesn't matter one iota; it'll just gather up everything in its path and get bigger and bigger until it's completely unstoppable. It's just a matter of time until Mario's all rolled up in a mushroom and flame flower Katamari. 

Winner: The Prince

Quarter Finals

Kratos vs. Kirby

With his ability-absorbing enemy-swallowing power, Kirby seems like a sure bet to go all the way in this tournament. Kratos isn't stupid, though; he'll have watched Kirby's first round performance and realized, like any decent Smash Bros. player, that the trick with Kirby is to avoid getting inhaled by him and then go on the attack. And while Kirby has other tricks up his sleeve, he doesn't quite have Kratos' finely-honed fighting abilities, giving the Spartan demigod plenty of options for kicking the little pink fellow into touch.

Winner: Kratos

Sephiroth vs. Dante

This is without doubt the most evenly-matched bout in this round; both Sephiroth and Dante boast immense strength and fighting power, and each has his own special abilities that could turn the match in their favor in an instant. Sephiroth's blades could easily slice Dante in half; Dante, on the other hand, can take being sliced in half in his stride, freeze time and then pluck Sephiroth's soul from his body. And no matter how much one raises his abilities, the other can counter with ease. At the end of the day, we’re going with Dante for pure drive and viciousness; Sephiroth, for all his power, is just a bit too other-worldly to win this fight.

Winner: Dante

Goku vs. Bayonetta

Both Goku and Bayonetta are endowed with fighting prowess and mystic abilities that serve to only enhance their skills further; this is going to be a fight that escalates quickly. In Goku's case it's his Super Saiyan transformation, granting him god-like levels of strength, speed and endurance; for Bayonetta it's her Umbran Climax, which similarly ramps up her attack power, and her Wicked Weaves, transforming her hair into conduits for demonic punishment. They should be enough to give her enough of an edge to deliver one of her finishing attacks, conjuring up an infernal demon that'll certainly do for Goku.

Winner: Bayonetta

Asura vs. The Prince

Like Kratos vs. Kirby, this bout's not going to last long. The Prince, for all his Katamari-rolling abilities, isn't really a fighter, and he'd barely be at the point of rolling up pencils and small change by the time Asura went in for an easy victory. Best to just look away.

Winner: Asura

Semi Finals

Kratos vs. Dante

Things are getting serious now. Demigod vs. half-demon, both of them super-skilled fighters with terrifying weapons to hand, and each thoroughly dedicated to the fight. Dante may have the advantage when it comes to supernatural powers, but the more down-to-earth Kratos isn't impressed by this; Dante can unleash his Devil Trigger and go full demon, but Kratos has eaten gods for breakfast and will just keep on coming at him. It'll be a long and brutal fight, with Dante pulling out every trick in the book, but at the end it'll be Kratos' indefatigability that lands him the killer blow and a place in the final.

Winner: Kratos

Asura vs. Bayonetta 

This fight won't last anywhere near as long, but it'll be spectacular, ramping up from high-speed brawling to a supernatural arms race at lightning pace, each character conjuring up increasingly massive attacks that are instantly countered by their opponent. Ultimately, though, Asura can go bigger than Bayonetta; he's beaten gods to death in his time, and it wouldn't be very long before the Umbran witch finds herself completely outgunned.

Winner: Asura

Final Round

Kratos vs. Asura

Both Kratos and Asura are such immensely powerful characters, it's not surprising to discover that there's already been a lot of debate over which of them would triumph in a fight, and that there's very little disagreement over the likely victor. Sorry, Kratos fans, but Asura's going to win this one. If it were a basic fight with ordinary weapons and no special powers allowed, it might be a more balanced bout, but with no holds barred Asura can ramp up the damage to unimaginable degrees. He probably wouldn’t even need to use his ultimate Destructor form; if he did, he’d be able to crush even a fully god-moded Kratos with little effort, while smashing an entire planet with his other hand.

Winner: Asura

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