Characters appearing in Nerf NOW!!.
- A Glass in the Hand: Something nasty is going to happen (usually to Jane or Angie) when he snaps a pencil in his tentacle.
- Author Avatar: Directly leading to...
- Author Powers: Occasionally uses them to punish a character who managed to get under his skin.
- Combat Tentacles: Though he uses them mostly to play fighting games.
- Epic Fail: Jo almost, almost messed up on the comic's #2000 strip, filling the missing numbering with this strip.
- Expressive Suckers His two largest suckers tend to act as "eyes" to help him emote. Half the time he's only drawn with those two.
- Last Lousy Point:
- Nice Hat: Rarely seen without a black beret which he gives to Engie-Tan/Angela as part of her taking over the comic.
- No Export for You: Invoked. He has stated that if consoles weren't so exorbitantly expensive in Brazil (Nintendo consoles in particular), he wouldn't be so partial in favor of PC gaming.
- Proud to Be a Geek: He runs a gaming webcomic, so yeah. He is shown to be a massive Dota 2 fan (in particular pro-game competitions), Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft and all around PC gamer using themes related to the use of Valve Software and their software distribution service Steam; though he derides console gaming, he is partial towards Nintendo titles.
- Put on a Bus: Willingly did this right before Engie-Tan (now known as Angela) returned home in order to embark on his own journey of self-discovery.
- The Bus Came Back: Returned in early 2016. He claimed to have been doing "acting" for various tentacle-based roles in video games in the meantime.
As a whole
- Action Girl: As noted below, they're basically female versions of various Mercenaries.
- Ascended Extra: Started out as just gender diverse (and Fanservice) during Team Fortress 2 comics. Now they're the main "cast".
- Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Alek/Jane, Morgan/Anne-Marie and Angie, respectively.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Girls are aware they're characters in the comics (it's often shown as them being hired by Jo as models and living in his house) and do this quite often and, in one case, literally.
- Distaff Counterpart: All girls are these to the Team Fortress 2 classes.
- Five-Man Band:
- The Hero: Angie, Tentajo's original sidekick/secondary Author Avatar.
- The Lancer: Jane the Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist.
- The Big Girl: Alek, being a female Heavy.
- The Smart Girl: Morgan, the nerdy, intelligent indie-gamer.
- The Chick: Anne-Marie, although she's more of The Dark Chick, whose main gimmick is being the shameless Cam Whore.
- Gamer Chick: Most pronounced with Morgan, Anne-Marie, and Jane, who are respectively an Indie gamer, a Cam Whore, and a Call of Duty FPS addict. Angie and Alek aren't as pronounced, although Alek does appear to be a more casual player.
- First-Name Basis: By design, though they don't have last names, to begin with.
- Ms. Fanservice: It's in their contracts. The point is driven even further when you realize that they all sleep naked.
Angie is a red-head, and sometimes bespectacled, girl who is the equivalent of a TF2 engineer who plays for the Blue team (she was initially referred to as BLU Engie-Tan). She has a great preference for building and repairing. She was the first of the five who was introduced and serves as the second-in-command and a foil to Jo, the leader of the five, and the landlord for their apartment.
- Blind Without Them: She has horrible eyesight, but she avoids her glasses because the readers don't like them.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Used to explode if Jo as much as looked at female character from any game other than TF2.
- Cool Big Sis: For her four girlmates.
- Create Your Own Villain: In a way. She made her own Indie Game to star in, where Maggie the Magi was the villain. Now, this being gaming comic, the "real" Maggie came knocking at her door.
- Demoted to Extra: From December 2013 to December 2014, as a result of getting kicked out of Jo's house, (see Put on a Bus below) she only appeared a handful of times until her official return, seen working on her game and/or getting trolled by Jo.
- Jumping Out of a Cake: Pops out of a giant cheesecakenote wearing nothing but her bra for the tenth anniversary of the comic...except she did this mid-June and the actual anniversary was in February.
- The Lancer: Usually second in command of the comic behind Jo, became The Leader upon her return with Jo's subsequent departure, and with his return she flip-flops between being the leader of the girls at their bar one strip and Jo's lancer the next.
- Machine Worship: In this comic, She's utterly astounded that Alek does not only not worship the "machine spirit", but she's even completely unaware that it exists in the first place! Yes, that's right, Angie is a follower of the Cult Mechanicus.
- Meganekko: Has become short-sighted between the time she left and returned to the house requiring her to wear glasses. She tries not to because the readers hate it. It's not working out so well thus far...
- Nice Hat: A collection of them, but most often seen in yellow hard hat called Mr. Hat.
- Not So Different: From Maggie the Magi, who stole Angie's hard hat, only for Angie to not just take it back but take Maggie's pointy hat. Morgan calls her on that and wonders if giving the pointy hat would get Maggie to leave. Then Angie recalls all she went through with Maggie and gives a Big "NEVER!".
- Punny Name: Her official name, Angela, can be shortened to "Angie" one letter difference from Engie.
- Would Hurt a Child: When Morgan THEN asks what Angie will do, Angie makes the mistakes of flexing a muscle and saying, "I kicked her ass once, I just need to do it again." Causing Mama Bear Alek to go "Angie no hurt small kids, yes? Only Bad people hurt small kids." And puts the onus back on Angie when she asks, "Are you bad people, Angie?" Forcing Angie to back down and settle for keeping Maggie out of hat-grab range.
- Promotion to Parent: She becomes Maggie's mom after the child calls her so. This forces her to leave her Overwatch job in order to find a more stable position to spend time with Maggie.
- Put on a Bus: In late 2013, she was booted out of Jo's house to force her to make her own game.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red to RED Engie's Blue.
- Seriously Scruffy: By the time of her return.
- This Is Unforgivable!: Angie had her cheesecake eaten by Jane, Alek and Maggie (and gets back at the first two by tampering with their Internet connections; it takes Jane buying Angie more fancy cheesecake to fix it). Jane stole the stylus Angie used to draw the comic, and a free-for-all with the other girls broke it, prompting a visit by Zone-tan with a replacement and a dire warning. The final straw was Jane and Alek stealing a dispenser Angie loaded with money, and not even buying unusual shotguns with it (which would have given them mercy with Angie). Jane and Alek think fanservice for the strip will help them settle up with Angie, but this was the last straw: Angie has had enough of their trolling, and throws them both out.
- Wrench Wench
Heavy Weapons Girl/HWG/Aleksandrina/Alek
Alek is a blonde, towering and physically built girl who is the equivalent of the Heavy from TF2. She is shown to be kind-hearted and given to use a mostly attacking and simplistic approach to gaming.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Don't disrespect her DOTA team, Empire, and don't use a Priest Deck against her Warrior Deck in Hearthstone.
- Boobs of Steel: The most endowed of all girls and also the strongest physically. She's had to use that strength on both Anne-Marie (when Jo "accidentally uploaded" a video of Anne-Marie changing onto the internet) and Morgan (when Jane trolled her on Homeworld Remastered).
- When trying to wear Jane's Mario-based uniform, this hurt Alek because the shirt she was given was WAY too small for her.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Sanguine.
- Hulk Speak/Third-Person Person: Slips into this when angry or excited.
- Kleptomaniac Hero: She is Jane's co-thief during the "cheesecake" and "money-filled dispenser" thefts.
- Mama Bear: Is protective of Maggie the Magi, even with the girl's history with Angie.
- Meaningful Name: Aleksandrina translates to "Sasha" her Spear Counterpart, The Heavy's favorite minigun.
- Gratuitous Russian: Proper Russian name is Aleksandra. Although it may sound less Russian to non-speakers than Aleksandrina.
- Mother Russia Makes You Strong: Just like her Spear Counterpart.
- Promoted Fanboy: She got starry-eyed when Overwatch first introduced Zarya. Later, when they got jobs at Overwatch, she was cast as Zarya.
- Stupid Good:
- She lets Maggie in, not knowing the girl's history with Angie and her hard hat.
- The "Bad Influence" strips have Anne-Marie ready to manipulate Alek (the first time in fanservice by Alek buying cards that get removed from Anne-Marie's picture, then almost have Alek do fanservice herself). Both times Morgan stops the manipulations.
- She's shown to be a preternatural gamer by virtue of playing for the fun of it; when Jane tries to compare, Alex is miles ahead with virtually little effort.
Morgan is a black, dreadlock-haired and lean girl who serves as an equivalent to the Demolition Specialist in TF2. She is shown to be somewhat cynical and has a logical approach to her everyday life; she is given to play strategy games that require dedication and grinding.
- Always Second Best: In terms of exposition, and out of the five girls, Morgan is second to Angie in importance and being featured in the comic.
- Awesomeness by Analysis: This is her main approach to gaming, as she enjoys analyzing every variable before even beginning the game itself.
- Berserk Button: Jane learned the hard way not to troll Morgan about Homeworld Remastered.
- Cheaters Never Prosper: Averted. When she constantly wore her "Blanket of Modesty" during Anne's choice of bellydancer outfit based off of Shantae's, Morgan was considered a "cheater" who didn't "play by the rules" by the fanbase. As a result, the rabid fanbase demanded that Morgan forfeit her turn of choosing the next theme outfit as a result. However, that meant Jane got to choose the uniform instead which happened to be the same idea Morgan first put out...but it turns out Morgan had pitched Jane's idea as her own first, so when Jane did the same thing, only Anne argued Morgan was "cheating" again.
- Didn't Think This Through: She didn't count on Alek being TOO big and tall for the shirts for the uniform, though.
- Cloudcuckoolander's Minder: For the rest of the cast, as she is shown to keep the comic civilized. She fulfills this role, in particular, to keep Jo, Angie, and Jane in reins.
- Complexity Addiction: Game-wise, she prefers complex ones with multiple options,or playstyles with the same in games with multiple classes.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Phlegmatic.
- Hipster: She has had her moments.
- Hollywood Thin: She's the thinnest of the five girls and the least physically endowed; still, she is shapely and attractive in all considerations.
- Logic Bomb: Her plans in Hearthstone come to this with a Mage Deck.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: When the Hearthstone "Goblins vs. Gnomes" expansion was released, the options completely overwhelmed her. The final panel has her laying across her bed with her blouse opened, the top button of her pants undone, and her in bliss, saying "There is so much..." with a lollipop in hand.
- Meaningful Name: Likely named after Captain Morgan's Rum, as her Spear Counterpart The Demoman is a heavy alcoholic.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Thanks to her little speech in trying to get Alek and Jane back into the house. Angela decides to take the words to heart, gives up her magic stylus and decides for a more "real world" approach. Meaning the girls had to move out their previously posh furnishing to a run-down apartment and actually have to look for jobs.
- Only Sane Man: She is the least zany of the five girls, as well as being the most methodical.
- Peek-a-Bangs: In place of Demoman's Eyepatch of Power, though only when playing TF2.
- Security Blanket: With bomb prints, no less.
- Spider-Sense: Of the "warning of incoming perversion type." More and more of her Prehensile Hair (dreadlocks) keeps rising the more a situation becomes more and more perverted. At full alert ALL her hair stands straight up.
- Token Minority: The only black character of the five girls. Later retconned into her being Brazilian (with her skin being lightened somewhat). She's seen cheering for a Brazilian character here. then "exposed" through Tickle Torture here.
- Token Wholesome: In general, Morgan tends to wear the most conservative clothing, is the least likely to dress in anything sexy, and be the most likely to disdain any fanservice. This hasn't stopped her from showing off, but it's much rarer than with the other girls and is usually because she was coerced, or unaware. This came to a head with a reader's poll to determine if the fans wanted to see Morgan in a conservative cosplay outfit or Anne-Marie in a sexy cosplay outfit. (Morgan won.)
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Jane. Though lately it seems to have begun to blossom into belligerent sexual tension if they're not outright getting cozy.
- When JO returns he mentions that he always knows what the girls are up to. When asked what he meant by everything he replies with "I mean everything." while looking at a blushing Jane and Morgan.
- Woman Scorned: Sniper really shouldn't have ticked her off...
Jane is a platinum-blonde girl who serves as the equivalent to the Soldier in TF2. She is shown to have a trickster personality and a highly competitive approach to gaming. She is particularly fond of mindless first-person shooters and fighting games, and she is shown to dislike old games. She is, begrudgingly, a janitor by trade.
- Adaptation Dye-Job: used to have white hair but it changed to a light beige upon becoming an Ascended Extra.
- Affectionate Nickname: Morgan is fond of calling her "pumpkin".
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: A DLC pack was once used by Morgan to distract Jane long enough to end razzing her.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Morgan. They argue a lot but are sometimes shown as physically getting cozy. When Jo returns, he mentions that he always knows what the girls are up to. When asked what he meant by everything, he replies with "I mean everything." while looking at a blushing Jane and Morgan.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: They're nearly the size of her eyes.
- Competition Freak: She trolls her friends to goad them into playing with her, only to then pummel them to dust.
- Dumb Blonde: Not truly stupid, but is often called out by Morgan for playing "brainless shooters". She gets it back at Morgan once.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Choleric.
- Good Angel, Bad Angel: When Jane finds a game-breaking bug in an online game her Bad Angel (black hair and red skin) tells her to exploit it before it can be fixed, while her Good Angel (golden hair and normal skin) urges her to post it so the bug can be fixed faster.
- If It's You, It's Okay: She loves Morgan, and one of the main reasons she puts up with her janitor jobs (aside from these being good for her to fall back upon in times of need) is because she likes to show her that she's responsible.
- Meaningful Name: Shares her name with her Spear Counterpart The Soldier
- Rapunzel Hair: Kept in a huge braid, yet it still reaches past her hips.
- Troll: Loves pissing people off. Jo and Morgan are her favorite targets.
- Bullying a Dragon: her attempts to piss off Alek or Jo often backfire painfully. She thinks it's Worth It with Jo. Alek, however, shows Jane otherwise. Morgan got got trolled by Jane over Homeworld Remastered and gained Fireball Eyeballs to give Jane concern she'd done one trolling too much (as Alek had to keep Morgan from hurting Jane badly).
- This Is Unforgivable!: When Angie took over, Jane trolled her THREE times:
- Angie had her cheesecake eaten by Jane, Alek and Maggie (and gets back at the first two by tampering with their Internet connections; it takes Jane buying Angie more fancy cheesecake to fix it).
- Jane stole the stylus Angie used to draw the comic, and a free-for-all with the other girls broke it, prompting a visit by Zone-tan with a replacement stylus and a dire warning.
- The final straw was Jane and Alek stealing a dispenser Angie loaded with money, and not even buying unusual shotguns with it (which would have given them mercy with Angie). Jane and Alek think fanservice for the strip will help them settle up with Angie, but Angie has had finally enough of the trolling, and throws them both out.
- Soldiers at the Rear: She has been part of DotA and Overwatch... as a janitor. You'd be surprised at how much janitorial work she has to do. Case in point...
- Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Her role, more or less spelled out here.
- White-Haired Pretty Girl: Used to be this, until becoming an Ascended Extra; now it's a light beige color.
Anne-Marie is a sculptural black-haired girl; she is the female equivalent of the Spy in TF2. She is shown to have a money-driven superfluous personality and she is the least featured of the five. She is given to do streaming shows full of fanservice, and she likes to cosplay.
- The Aloner: She's fine with whatever the other girls do as long as they leave her some alone time to stream, so she's usually on her own and doesn't interact as much with her roomies as they do with each other. Still, she's a more involved gamer than Alek, for example.
- Always Second Best: Feels this way in comparison to her older sister Victoire, which also explains why she never mentioned having a sister up until Victoire dropped back into her life.
- Cam Whore: Pretty much her schtick.
- Combat Pragmatist: When playing Hearthstone. Mage-deck Morgan gets bogged down with options, and Druid deck Angie has a simple plan. What does Anne-Marie say? "All to the face."
- Cosplay: As part of her fanservice ploys, she'll wear anything... and then undress.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: Invoked. She messes up her hair as part of a "washed up" act to get Jo to draw her again, then later keeps it because the fans liked it.
- Fireball Eyeballs: When Victoire visits, Angie suggests a "casual family game" to play...and Anne gets these suggesting "Mario Kart."
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Melancholic.
- Greed: She really loves raking in the green.
- Anti-Heroic BSOD: Went into one after losing to Morgan. This somewhat stuck for several strips afterward.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: She's a greedy, backstabbing camwhore... who was Engie-Tan's sole supporter during her banishment from the comic to work on her game.
- Even then, she stole the game's code when Engie refused to release it. Engie knew it was for a good cause though... even if Anne got slapped twice (then hugged) for it.
- Manipulative Bitch: She tries to milk money and exploit fanservice out of her roommates at every opportunity she has.
- Master of Disguise: As a Spy. She ends up ganking Widowmaker to get her outfit and gear to try to pass as her during the "Overwatch employment" arc. However, Reaper sees Anne-Marie is NOT Widowmaker, in which she tries to go Through His Stomach by even bringing donuts and his favorite coffee, "Black, Columbian Grain, French-Roasted." Then, Reaper goes, "She stays."
- Nice Hat: Her red beret.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: When Jo "accidentally uploaded" a video of Anne-Marie in the changing room, she was NOT happy. Alek needed to keep her from hurting Jo.
- Shameless Fanservice Girl: Jo and Angie are fine with her activities as long as she doesn't do it in the comic; this is, of course, not for her lack of trying.
- Token Evil Teammate: Downplayed, she's just greedy and manipulative.
- Unkempt Beauty: Though she is a neat freak in terms of her appearance, she's stopped combing her hair from this strip onward, to absolutely no detriment whatsoever.
Maggie the Magi
Maggie is a Canon Immigrant from "Engie's Game" who joined the Five Girls in their apartment while pursuing Angie's hard hat. She developed a protective relationship with Alek, while later she became Angie's daughter by her own volition.
- Ascended Extra: Went from "Engie's Game" to the main "Nerf Now!" strip.
- Big Bad: Of "Engie's Game," where she stole Angie's hard hat. After going through the game, Angie defeats Maggie to not just get her hard hat back but takes Maggie's Mr. Pointy Hat as a trophy.
- Happily Adopted: She becomes Angie's daughter after calling her "mama" in what turned to be her very first words, implying that this is the reason she came to live with Angie in the first place.
- I'm Taking Her Home with Me!: Alek gets this vibe from Maggie, even giving the girl a sandwich that Maggie enjoys.
- Kids Are Cruel: She stole Angie's hard hat, leading to Angie to get it back and take Mr. Pointy Hat to add insult to injury. When she tracks down Angie, she still tries to get the hard hat.
- Manipulative Bitch / Smug Snake: Knows Mama Bear Alek won't let Angie hurt her again once Angie makes the mistake of saying, "I Kicked her ass one, I just need to do it again."
- The Voiceless: For a long period, she doesn't say a word. A later comic had Jo try to teach her how to speak, with her only responding in emojis. She finally speaks here, in which she calls Angie mama.
Angie's alternate-team counterpart. Has since vanished from the comic.
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Disappeared without mention in late 2013. Word of God says he decided not to use her anymore since she's not his original character.
- Dating Catwoman: With BLU Engie.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Blue to BLU Engie's Red. Yeah, it's convoluted, especially given their "original early-strip colors" had "Angie" as original RED Engie-Tan, while her blonde counterpart was BLU. (Which led to some potential blackmail material for BLU Spy when he had pics of Blue Pyro with Blonde Engie-tan.) By the time Jo had his DeviantArt account, though, they were their current colors.
- Aren't You Going to Ravish Me?: She's so desperately lonely that she tries to seduce the pizza delivery man in a skimpy outfit (atop her Zero Suit). Even that doesn't work!
- Batman Can Breathe in Space: Averted in this strip - turns out certain cheat codes aren't such a good idea.
- Bus Crash: Were you expecting a Metroid release for the Nintendo Switch? Fat chance, you poor sod!
- Can't Get Away with Nuthin': When Nintendo smashed the Another Metroid 2 Remake fan project with extreme prejudice, Samus got an earful. Poor girl...
- Captain Ersatz: Invoked by Angie to give her an excuse to hire Samus.Angie's note: Just change your name so I can claim ignorance, dimwit.
- Casting Couch: Samus applies for an interview for Angie's bar, encountering an all too familiar couch; on the next strip, the logical segue follows, as Samus makes the wrong, but totally safe assumption of the kind of job it entails by stripping to her barest minimum clothing. She's that desperate for a job at that point.
- Damn You, Muscle Memory!: When she goes back to Engie's bar after the release of Metroid: Samus Returns, she accidentally punches her across the room instead of hugging her due to her new QTE mechanic introduced in that game.
- Drowning Their Sorrows: She does this a lot.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Her first appearance in the comic dates back to 2009, way before most of the main girls appeared.
- I Just Want to Have Friends: Mario argues that Samus is too grizzled and battle-hardened for her to come to an end of the year party... Samus disagrees.
- Oh, Crap!: Bowser comes kicking doors to kidnap a princess, but when it comes to Princess Samus... oh man!
- Old Maid: One of her biggest concerns in the comic is turning into this, especially given that other Nintendo female characters have hooked up (Peach with Mario and Zelda with Link).
- Preaching to the Choir: Samus complains that Nintendo won't release any Metroid related stuff, but Princess Daisy doesn't sympathize.
- Required Secondary Powers: As implied here, she lacks some of them.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: When stumbling upon a tentaclenote dressed as a Japanese high school girl.
- Waiting for a Break: She becomes a waitress at Angie's bar because Nintendo won't return her franchise to the major IP status, being stuck in Development Hell, not releasing games or including her in shared IPs like Mario Kart. She's happy to be working at something instead of absolutely nothing, though.
- Of course, once she gets that job, that's when Nintendo announces new games for her franchise which probably led to Angie firing her.
- What You Are in the Dark: Every girl wants to be a princess at some point, even Samus. Also counts as Not So Above It All.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Her "Zamus" disguise involves dyeing her hair a greenish color. This is a Call-Back to her sprite back in the NES era.
The older sister of Anne-Marie, she's apparently a famed supermodel and actress.
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The responsible (having a hugely successful public career) to Anne-Marie's foolish (streaming games and working as a bartender).
- Lady in a Power Suit: Combines a stylish orange suit with a very no-nonsense demeanor.
- Meaningful Name: Her name means "victory" in French, which is appropriate considering her career.
- Pride: Her very first appearance has her telling Anne-Marie that she has a television interview regarding a move she won an award for... before randomly throwing in that she's engaged, for no other apparent reason other than to jab at her sister.
- Sore Loser: While she does a good job of hiding it, underneath her pleasant demeanor she's outright furious that she lost (repeatedly) at Mario Kart to the main crew.
- Unsportsmanlike Gloating: Oh yes, she does this ALL the time. She's so bad at this, it's revealed that the only reason she plays video games in the first place is to win at them. Having fun is a distant second, if it even comes into the picture at all.