TA Top Five: Camp Counselor Characters

By Jonathan Barnes,
Summer Camp is a tried and true tradition across many nations. As a Summer Camp Director, the toughest part of running camp is often the first step... finding good camp counselors. Good camp counselors are often hard to find and come from a variety of different backgrounds, but when I'm selecting mine, I always focus on their ability to keep campers safe, have fun, and then their ability to teach campers something.

Since camp was on my brain for about the past four months, I felt it was only fitting for me to construct a camp staff of gaming characters that I would hire to work with campers. Much like the criminally underrated film Wet Hot American Summer, these characters come from a wide range of backgrounds and skills, but are clearly fit to work with kids.

As always, if your favorite character was left off of this list, it's because either I didn't think they could pass the background check, are from a Nintendo or Sony game (seriously, people... warning), didn't remember them, or am still harboring a personal grudge against you for that thing you did that one time.

Honorable Mentions

Lara Croft - Tomb Raider Series

One thing that a camp staff relies upon is counselors that are unflappable and have "seen things, man!" Lara fits this description to a T. While the newest reboot shows her earning that unflappable reputation and gaining that toughness, she would make an excellent camp counselor because of her smarts, her physical fitness, and her archery skills. I would hire her to teach one of my archaeology/paleontology camps any day.

Guybrush Threepwood - The Secret of Monkey Island Series

Every camp staff needs a lovable goober. I always make sure to hire one or two. These are the people that are always good people at their core and have the best interests of everyone at heart, but can't seem to get things exactly right. This is Guybrush. He'd be our camp goober that everyone would love but just not in that way. Kind of like "Coop" in the seminal classic, Wet Hot American Summer.

Top Five

5- Eddie Riggs - Brütal Legend Achievements

Music programs are dying across the United States due to lack of funding and (occasionally) interest. The latter would be SO not an issue if Eddie were the counselor at band camp. Having Eddie teach kids how to shred and wail would make for the most excellent music camp this side of Bonnaroo. His sense of humor would also not go unnoticed.

4- Varric Tethras - Dragon Age Series

Those who have seen the THE GREATEST FILM OF ALL TIME, Wet Hot American Summer, may have been shocked to find out about the shenanigans that camp counselors do when kids aren't around. Those are only slight exaggerations. With that in mind, I would totally hire Varric as a camp counselor. He's great with a story (keeping the campers attention), good at archery, and would throw the most insane staff parties. The only possible source of trouble would be pairing him up with Eddie and the next guy on the list... that would be a cabin that's TOO much fun.

3- Joker - Mass Effect Series

Alright, he's not exactly going to lead a rousing game of football, but Joker would make a dynamite counselor for the "indoor kids" who are in computer and tech camps. He's the type of guy who older camper would think is "lame" but they go home and rave to their parents about how cool he is. Plus, sarcasm is the greatest weapon to use with teenage campers who think they're "too cool for school camp".

2- Triss Merigold - The Witcher Series
Xmas Party 6

All throughout my playthrough of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Achievements, I couldn't fathom why Geralt was wasting his time with Yennefer when Triss was CLEARLY a superior person. She was warm, caring, smart, fun, and funny. All of those things are exactly what would make her an excellent camp counselor as well. She's warm enough to work with the "little kids" and sassy enough to get respect from teenagers. Plus, if anyone acted up, she could turn them into a newt or a talking can of mixed vegetables (like in the movie you should be watching right now, Wet Hot American Summer).

1- Elizabeth - BioShock Infinite (Xbox 360) Achievements

Smart? Check. Caring? Check. Child-like sense of wonder and fun? Check. Using an outdated rhetorical device to make a point in a Top Five? Check.

Seriously, though, Elizabeth may be the most perfect camp counselor in gaming. She has a genius intellect, knows how to have fun, is caring and protective to a fault, and sees the world through the eyes of a child. She is literally everything I would want and look for in a camp counselor... not unlike Katie from Wet Hot American Summer, the end-all-be-all of art that has ever graced the silver (or any other) screen.

The TA Team will be bringing you The TA Top Five every Sunday until we run out of coolness to debate and discuss. If you have an idea for a Top Five you'd like us to do, be sure to let us know in the comments!
Jonathan Barnes
Written by Jonathan Barnes
Jonathan has been a news/views contributor since 2010. When he's not writing reviews, features, and opinion pieces, he spends his days working as an informal science educator and his nights as an international man of mystery.