The Top 7... Outrageously Camp Bad Guys

Solid Snake's secretly superior genetic brother, Liquid was the ultimate evil twin. And let's face it, that's a pretty camp b-movie concept in itself. Holding the other half of the Enfants Terrible DNA, he wasn't merely bad where Snake was good; he took all of the opposing personality traits.

Where Solid was angsty and introverted, Liquid had the demeanour of Patrick Stewart on a coke bender; always riotously theatrical of delivery, extravagant of arm gesture and mugsome of face. Where Solid hid in the shadows, Liquid - particularly in the Gamecube remake - leapt around as much scenery as he chewed, posing on top of anything with even a vaguely flat surface and punctuating every other sentence with a completely gratuitous back flip or somersault, just because he could.

Where Solid was wrapped in dark, constrictive body armour, Liquid demonstrated an abject refusal to ever even wear a shirt, despite Shadow Moses' ball-miniaturising cold. A pair of black leather gloves was alright though. Style over functionality every time with him.

Above: More hammy camp than the piglet Scouts. Glorious stuff.

Liquid reveled in hamming it up like any incorrigible old thesp you could think of, ably aided by a brilliant performance from voice of a thousand geek culture icons Cam Clarke. Without his histrionic, English-accented voice-over, Liquid would have been just another scheming megalomaniac, and his lengthy, self-indulgent speeches simply bland filler in a game already packed with over-written cut-scenes. As it was though, he was one of those bad guys we never wanted to see die. Thank god for prosthetic possession.

Notable also-ran

Low-polygon dictator Sheruda Garo from Namco's original Time Crisis could easily be construed as a budget version of Liquid. Bouffant of hair, remarkably similar of voice and bizarrely sharp of suit for a man in the middle of a major terrorist coup, he was so mincingly unthreatening that he died before the last boss fight and had to hand over the reigns to his hired lackey Wild Dog. But then again, he did insist on bringing a knife to a gunfight, so it was his own fault. Using a blade may fit the elegantly camp bad guy archetype better than an uncouth firearm, but even Liquid had the sense to use a mech when the chips were down.

Number seven ranked assassin Destroyman was basically hero Travis Touchdown gone very wrong. A passive-aggressive nerd with no respectable sense of self image, No More Heroes' "Mr.Cosplay" was like that guy at an anime convention; the big fat dude in the ridiculous costume who thinks he looks great and greets all right-thinking criticism with misguidedly arrogant venom and snark.

He bitched about the people he had to deal with during his day job as a postman, and took out his frustrations in a ludicrous, self-empowering, purple superhero suit. He swung around on a theatrical winch, pretending he could fly. He feigned politeness and honour in order to score cheap hits with an electric hand buzzer, of all pieces of piss-poor weaponry. And to top it all off, he had a gigantic pulsating crotch laser of doom. A crotch laser of doom, people! And machinegun nipples! The poor, sorry bastard didn't have a clue how ludicrous he was, and that posturing lack of self-awareness only made an already camp bad guy doubly so.

Notable also-ran

Bad Girl, NMH's number two is our favourite of the whole lot. A hard drinking, bat swinging, girly-strop throwing psychopath in a frilly pink Lolita dress, she'd fake a sob-worthy injury to get a cheap and brutal instant kill and she spent all her spare time beating the hell out of gimps for fun. Combining exaggerated girliness with childish tantrums and a vicious killer instinct, she was camp, cute and badass all at the same time. She's exactly the kind of girl we'd take home to meet the family, if she wasn't likely to kill them all within half an hour.


Top 7


  • AA95mp - December 21, 2008 2:54 p.m.

    machine gun nipples????????????
  • RedOutlive10 - February 10, 2009 6:09 p.m.

    Kefka was really memorable and full of personality, this plus FFVI's story were the main reasons I still think of Final Fantasy VII as overrated. Not bad, just not as good as the other FF games many people never played.
  • Danomeon - March 17, 2009 5:52 p.m.

    Salazar was one of my favorites. I loved how he wasn't some big, looming badass like the chief (Or "Centipede man", as I like to call him.) Or wesker, but just a small, humble person. I also loved how he seemed human when we was cut in the hand with leon's knife in the cinimatic a bit before the final battle with him.
  • Awesomeitude1523 - March 3, 2009 6:07 p.m.

    It was sooooo much fun to finally kill Sander Cohen in his apartment, and then just stand there smacking his corpse with a wrench for half an hour. Crazy old fool.
  • KillerPotato - June 4, 2009 6:04 p.m.

    Laser crotches and hitler in a mech suit, the making of a great article
  • ryno - June 23, 2009 8:29 p.m.

    why the F@&k isnt the joker from batman on this list
  • Basketcase676 - November 17, 2008 5:39 p.m.

    Haha, good read! And of course Salazar had to make an appearance, too much flambouancy for a bad guy.
  • misfit119 - November 17, 2008 7:51 p.m.

    Enfants Terrible was what it was called in MGS1. It didn't have to make sense, it was written by Kojima. Not a lick of Metal Gear Solid makes sense, the fan created rambles make more sense. Oh and I want to eat Kojima's face off for that whole dominant, non-dominant gene crap. Nothing will ever top Kefka for over the top bad guys. I'd pick him over Girlieroth any time. I like my bad guys homicidal, not all emo and whiney, like you get from most JRPGs.
  • GR_DavidHoughton - November 17, 2008 10:09 p.m.

    Hunter2458: Yikes. Well pointed out. Post-credits dialogue acknowledged. Don't know how that one slipped through. I'll put it down to it being Monday. Edit made.
  • GamesRadarMikelReparaz - November 17, 2008 10:10 p.m.

    I'd also suggest this one: But that's just me. (Link doesn't work, just copy and paste)
  • GR_DavidHoughton - November 17, 2008 10:26 p.m.

    I don't quite know how I feel about that image, Mikel. But I don't think I want to look at it any more.
  • Johnny6Gun - November 17, 2008 11:32 p.m.

    Good call on Alfred Ashford. I was going to suggest him after seeing Salazar on here, but you already had him as a #1 runner up. Well played!
  • Amnesiac - November 18, 2008 3:13 a.m.

    Yeah, I'm with most everyone else here, the first person I thought of when I saw the headline was Kefka. Love that YouTube cosplay video by the way. Also, the line about the two Narcisusses having sex in a room full of mirrors made me lawl hardly.
  • Defguru7777 - November 18, 2008 3:32 a.m.

    Pansies. Salazar's head is above my mantle. Guffaw.
  • Ravenbom - November 18, 2008 6:58 a.m.

    Yeah, Kefka was my first thought for number one. I wasn't sure if he was going to make it, since his 16 bit camp is hard to quantify out of context nowadays. But I'm happy he made it! He's definitely my number one camp bad guy. Also, I'm more than mildly disturbed by that CJ Collins video.
  • coffeenebula - November 18, 2008 5:40 p.m.

    What about the Director of H.A.R.M. in No One Lives Forever 2? He and the mime king deserve at least an honorable mention!
  • CandiedJester - November 22, 2008 3:16 a.m.

    o: How did I not know about this Kefka character? He seems frickin awesome. He does act like the Joker too. I think Im in love >///< lol That dude was a good cosplayer. Haha. MAMMA'S BOY! Best thing ever XD The only ones I knew were Sander Cohen and that twurp from RE.
  • Schuultz - November 23, 2008 12:33 a.m.

    I want David Houghton on the Podcast - if necessary via skype or whatever
  • Gameward-Bound - November 24, 2008 3:38 a.m.

    hey, what about that clown guy from devil may cry 3? or was he not a bad guy?
  • chrisat928 - November 17, 2008 5:36 p.m.

    How did I know Kefka would be number one? Awesome article.

Showing 1-20 of 39 comments

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