I love those characters mentioned in the article. They deserve to be main attractions in the Video Game hall of fame for decades or even centuries to come, but by today's standards they are hardly characters and are more like simple avatars. They have no story or emotion behind them.
How about a character that matches their iconic place in history, but also has story and depth, like Link from the Zelda series? What about newer characters that give you an experience to rival and, in some cases, exceed their movie and book brethren?
I'd bring up characters like Solid Snake, from the Metal Gear series, Master Chief, from the Halo series, or Commander Shephard, from the Mass Effect series.
In fact, the Mass Effect series has taken great strides in gaming stories. While, as far as I know, Knights of the Old Republic was the first series to have differences in the story depending on how you played previous titles, Mass Effect has grown the idea greatly. Each choice you make is collected into a save file at the end of the game and can be loaded into the next game in the series to give you an exponentially unique experience as you play each game in the series.
Pac-Man, Mario, and Sonic are legendary in their own way, but are weak as characters. Even Aeris, who will always be remembered as one of the most jarring deaths in gaming, is weak as a character, since her death is the only "epic" part to her story.
With the way gaming has developed in the 35-ish years it's been around, I can't wait to see where it's at in another 35 years.