The most awesome suits of armor in video games

No video game character is fully dressed without a totally badass suit of high-tech armor. Even soft, pudgy Mario eventually joined the club, slipping on the exoskeleton of a dead Hammer Brother by his third outing. But there are so many other, even cooler armors out there in game-dom, and here are some of the reigning champs.

Metroid: Samus' Powersuit

The original and best. Sure, a lot of people talk about Samus's powered-up Varia Suit because it admittedly looks cool, but who really needs shoulderpads that big? There's also a lot of talk about the Zero Suit, but that's only because it's Samus in a skin-tight leotard, not because the suit actually does anything other than excite the easily-excitable. No, the Powersuit, the armor you have at the beginning of Metroid, the classic red and yellow, is where it's at. If you dig into the Metroid series' weird backstory, it's even possible that Mother Brain created the suit herself. There's really not much else to do when you're a brain in a jar.

Halo: Master Chief's MJOLNIR Armor

Weighing in at 1000 pounds, and named after Thor's mighty magical hammer, the MJOLNIR armor is totally awesome, in a completely overpowered, impossible, ridiculous way. It's neurologically bonded to its wearer, made of titanium, filled with cooling gel, and just plain makes its user look like they could destroy you. Despite Master Chief's complete anonymity in the franchise, he's become one of today's most iconic video game heroes, and it's mostly thanks to the beautifully designed suit that he wears into battle against The Flood. It's just one aspect of a game that takes art and design very seriously.

Battleborn: Toby's Berg

Without his hulking death machine, Toby is just a miserable, anxious, adorable penguin. But when he's strapped into Berg, an enormous battle mech he put together with his own flippers, he's pretty much unstoppable. Equipped with mines, a railgun, a protective forcefield that actually improves railgun performance, and the ability to shoot through walls, Toby is ridiculously fun to play. Even though Battleborn is currently struggling against Overwatch for multiplayer FPS superiority, only one game has a deadly penguin. Point, Battleborn.

D.Overwatch: Va's Mech

Can't have one without the other. Another cute character sporting some hulking mech, D.Va runs around Overwatch in a crazy powerful robo-armor, laying waste to those around her and throwing up powerful shields. When her armor eventually blows up, she can still run around with a couple of light guns to take out enemies, and even summon new armor after a few moments. Even better, she can set her armor on self-destruct, hop out, and let loose one of the most powerful one-hit explosions you'll see in the game. And you can do it over and over, until everyone is completely sick of you. How adorable.

Earthworm Jim: Super Power Suit

Most mech suit users just hop into their suits and use their built-in cunning and skills to make the best of what they're given. Earthworm Jim's suit is another story entirely. Jim was just a normal, wriggly worm before the suit fell on him from outer space, and the suit's amazing powers turned him into … a much bigger worm of average human intelligence. Not unlike Halo's MJOLNIR, the suit interfaces directly with Jim's brain and operates as would a four-limbed humanoid body, and is also nigh-indestructible. There aren't a whole lot of video game suits that can turn worms into heroes, so for pure power amplification, the Super Suit wins, hands down. Or whatever it is that worms have.

Metal Gear Solid 4: Liquid Ocelot's Metal Gear RAY

The Metal Gear REX models are pretty awesome, but watching Liquid Ocelot's amphibious Metal Gear RAY leap out of the ocean and violently throw itself onto land was a powerful message: it could afford to take damage, and it was more animal than machine. The fact that it has a button in the cockpit dedicated entirely to making the mech scream is pretty much all anyone needs to know, because it's sheer insanity. It's not even a terribly difficult fight if you keep your distance, but we're basing this one on looks alone. Just look at those crazy kangaroo legs. Honestly, Snake's just jealous he doesn't have one.

Bioshock: Big Daddy

This one's definitely more about the armor than the person inside it is, since the person inside is nothing but a pile of loose organs. Historically, Bioshock's Big Daddy suits were just heavy-duty diving rigs that enabled repair workers to work outside the underwater city of Rapture, but because it's Bioshock, mad scientists came along and started to physically — and chemically — bond humans to the suits, reducing them to a stew of angry guts floating around in a yellow, bioluminescent liquid. Because weird underwater city stuff, these guys bonded with, and protected Little Sisters, which are a whole other creepy story. Seeing little ghost girls being followed around by deadly steampunk diving rigs is the scary, spooky heart of Bioshock. Better watch out for that drill-hand.

Marvel vs. Capcom: Onslaught

Two of the most powerful people in the Marvel Universe are Professor X and Magneto, so when they conjoined into one crazy, skullfaced monster called Onslaught, it was a huge, universe-changing comic event. The frenemies came together when Professor X entered rage mode and tried to shut down Magneto's mind, and the rest is supervillainy history. As a comic character, it took the entire Marvel Universe to shut him down. As a video game boss, all it takes is one really skillful player, but Onslaught's armor makes him so huge that he's the height of the screen, making some of his full-body attacks very difficult to avoid. And in his second form, he becomes larger than your TV and flies around in the background, occasionally coming in for a deadly attack that you'll have to play out of your mind to survive.

Kirby Planet Robobot: Robobot Armor

Kirby might be the most freaky-adorable video game franchise of all time. A pink ball runs through forests, rides along rainbows, and collects magic yarn, all while viciously devouring his enemies alive and replicating their powers. Think Sylar from Heroes, or a six-week-old puppy that can breathe deadly poison. So, when Kirby hops into Robobot, a giant pink suit of armor with brutal punching powers, that can also scan and replicate the powers of his enemies, he might as well have injected electro-steroids. Robobot reaches a level of surreal ridiculousness that fits right in with the already-weird Kirby series, but adds the wanton destruction every adorable anthropomorphic marshmallow aficionado secretly craves.