Nancy DrewThe eponymous viewpoint character. Nancy is, of course, a young, self-declared "amateur" detective, who travels the world running headlong into danger and intrigue. At first it seemed she was simply prone to stumble into strange occurrences during her everyday life, but as the games progress, her name starts to get around and she is called upon specially to tackle strange and convoluted cases.
The Ace: Smart, pretty, independent, successful, etc; Nancy has this down pat.
Action Girl: Of course. She performs her daring feats in heels and a skirt, no less.
Nerves of Steel: She can keep her head in the most high-pressure situations.
No Indoor Voice: Even when she's supposed to be sneaking around, Nancy loves to announce her thoughts loudly and enthusiastically to nobody. Just try checking something off your checklist during a quiet part of the game:
Nancy: CAN'T CHECK THAT OFF 'TILL IT'S DONE!!
Red-Headed Hero: A brief shot of her from behind in Labyrinth of Lies shows her with a deep red ponytail. Of course, her hair's been described as red or reddish-blonde since the very beginning.
Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With Deirdre in The Deadly Device, Tino Balducci in White Wolf of Icicle Creek, and a few other characters in various games.
Ned NickersonNancy's boyfriend and frequent phone contact. Ned is never present in the games (that is, until Alibi in Ashes, where he became a playable character), but offers the player "hints" on how to clear stages and progress in the game. Later in the series he passes this utility on to Bess and George or Frank and Joe, leaving Ned free for romantic subplots and comic relief more than anything else.
Bess MarvinNancy's friend and George's cousin. Bess rarely (but occasionally) appears in-game, but is nearly always an available phone contact to offer Nancy hints on the game's progression, usually in tandem with George. She's the shallower and less adventurous of Nancy's two best girlfriends, but can be counted upon to dispense unexpected nuggets of humble wisdom when Nancy calls for it.
George FayneNancy's other friend and Bess's cousin. George is bold and capable, and like her cousin, is usually contactable for help even when she doesn't appear in the game. Though she doesn't possess Bess's understanding of personalities and social subtleties, she's a reliable source of advice on taking action, and Nancy's preferred companion when it comes to embarking on an adventure.
Action Girl: Like Nancy, but sportier and less worldly.
Frank and Joe HardyTwo more of Nancy's good friends and fellow "amateur sleuths", the Hardy boys are as quick-witted and curious as Nancy herself; she often asks them to lend new perspectives on her cases, and occasionally teams up with them. They also appear to be close friends of Ned, and are prone to both long-winded bickering and describing bizarre at-home Noodle Incidents during their phone calls with Nancy.
Action Duo: In contrast to Nancy, who operates solo.
Carson DrewNancy's father, a lawyer. Carson rarely appears in the game at all, as a phone contact or NPC, but is referenced often as the recipient of Nancy's Info Dump letters. He worries about Nancy's recklessness and frets for her well-being, but ultimately he supports her ambitions and is proud of her independence and success. In The Silent Spy, however, he's revealed to be hiding a few things from his daughter.
Anger Born of Worry: In some of the later games, Carson is clearly frustrated by Nancy's love of life-threatening situations.
Sonny JoonA series Easter Egg that became an ongoing Mythology Gag, Sonny Joon is a mysterious and eccentricConspiracy Theorist who's been taking internships at various oddball destinations of Nancy's since The Secret of the Scarlet Hand - and getting fired from all of them just before she arrives, leaving his candy wrappers and journals scattered everywhere in what's usually a Desk Full of Crazy. Sonny made his first in-game appearance in the series' latest installment The Shattered Medallion, revealing very clearly just why he lost all of those jobs.
Mythology Gag: He's pretty much the personification of the concept.
Reluctant Psycho: Has some shades of this in The Shattered Medallion, where he calls his friend in a panicked frenzy over something he has to do where "people will get hurt" - to protect the Earth from aliens, of course.
Talkative Loon: When he finally appears in The Shattered Medallion, he turns out to be this.
The Unseen: From Secret of the Scarlet Hand onward, you're always one step behind him, a little too late to meet... that is, until The Shattered Medallion.