28 Hunger Games Characters Ranked Worst To Best 

hunger games characters ranked

The Hunger Games is notorious for its twisted storyline (erm, kids fighting to the death…on television?!), dark dystopian themes, and well, the making of Jennifer Lawrence

But what we all remember well from this movie saga is its characters. The Hunger Games basically rolled out an entire cast of celebrities. Our heroes and villains are athletes – and coaches, managers, TV presenters, and the like. And as we’ve come to learn, this has introduced us to all kinds of fun characters with unique attributes, motivations, and roles to play. 

With that in mind, here’s a look at 28 of the most notable Hunger Games characters ranked from worst to best. 

28. Marvel

hunger games marvel

One thing we learn early on in The Hunger Games is that ‘Careers’ are sketchy. These are the kids who have actively trained to be Tributes and volunteered for the Games. They’re basically killing machines.

Well, Marvel is such a Career, hailing from the posh and privileged District 1. That makes him hard to like right off the bat…and then he kills our beloved Rue. He’s important because of how his actions impact Katniss, but throwing a spear through Rue guarantees you the bottom spot as the worst Hunger Games character ever. 

27. Glimmer

hunger games glimmer

Let’s just keep District 1’s Tributes from the 74th Hunger Games ranked together. Glimmer is Marvel’s male counterpart, and while she doesn’t do anything as horrible as spearing Rue, she’s still pretty evil.

This girl delights in the Games and sneers at Katniss when she’s chased up a tree. She’s also surprisingly useless. She can’t hit Katniss with an arrow, and dies because of a wasp (a.k.a. “tracker jacker”). Bonus awful points for later returning as a “mutt” Katniss has to kill all over again. 

26. Clove

hunger games clove

A Career Tribute from District 2, Clove is like Glimmer, only deadlier and more ruthless. Sort of like an ‘anti-Katniss’, both are skilled, but Clove is ruthless where Katniss is compassionate; Clove gloats about Rue’s death, Katniss mourns it; Clove relishes the Games and Katniss hates them.

It’s an interesting design for a character, but because she doesn’t last very long (thanks, Thresh!), she can’t rank much higher than this. 

25. Foxface

Foxface hunger games

Foxface is the female Tribute from District 5 at the 74th Hunger Games, and we don’t really get to know her. She’s quiet, she doesn’t ally with anyone, and she makes herself scarce. We do get a sense of her cleverness, though.

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By scavenging, stealing, and hiding, she winds up being one of the last standing. Unfortunately, she ends up stealing and eating poisonous berries from Peeta (possibly on purpose – we may never know). 

24. Enobaria

Enobaria hunger games

The world of The Hunger Games is all about ‘survival of the fittest.’ Because of this, characters become selfish and prioritize themselves above all else. That pretty much sums up the character of Enobaria and it actually works for her.

She won the 62nd Hunger Games, survived the chaos at the end of the Quarter Quell, and joined (and was spared by) the rebels. Enobaria doesn’t really matter that much, but she’s arguably among the saga’s biggest “winners.” 

23. Seneca Crane

hunger games Seneca Crane

As the Head Gamemaker of the 74th Hunger Games, Seneca Crane plays a big role in the first book and film. Beyond the role itself though, there just isn’t a whole lot to him.

Sure, he pretty much gives Katniss the chance to defy the Capitol throughout the Games. And yes, he spares Katniss and Peeta at the end. But he doesn’t seem to have any real motivation, which makes him less interesting than he could be. 

22. Tigris

hunger games tigris

Tigris is President Snow’s cousin, and a character we learn more about in The Ballad Of Songbirds And Snakes. Even in The Hunger Games trilogy, she’s intriguing.

Her role is to basically shelter and disguise the ‘Star Squad’ rebels during their final push toward Snow. (She almost plays the Aberforth Dumbledore role, to you Harry Potter fans out there.) It’s not a huge part, but the mystery about her character and past make her compelling. 

21. Thresh

hunger games thresh

Thresh may have a small role in the movies, but he deserves this ranking. Rue’s counterpart as the male Tribute from District 11, Thresh’s brief appearance is a heroic one.

He bursts onto the scene to save Katniss from Clove, and then lets her go as thanks for her tenderness toward Rue. It’s a nice moment in the Games, but it’s also an early glimpse of how Katniss can win over entire Districts. 

20. Primrose

prim hunger games

This is probably where our Hunger Games characters ranked list gets a little controversial. We know, we know…20 seems low. Everyone loves Prim.

Indeed, Primrose is designed to be loved. She’s Katniss’ motivation, and the very reason Katniss famously “volunteers as Tribute.” She’s essential to the story, but as a character, there’s not all that much to her. Prim is sweet and innocent, and Suzanne Collins found a way to make her a healer later on. But let’s be honest, she’s mostly just there to keep our Mockingjay going.  

19. Cato

cato hunger games

Cato is a little polarizing. On the one hand, he’s a beast; the male Career Tribute from District 2, and the strongest killer in the 74th Hunger Games. He plays the part well, and is indeed one of Katniss’ most frightening opponents.

On the other hand, Cato is also a little one-note. That may make perfect sense for a Career who’s been trained for the Games, but it keeps him from being anymore gripping.  

18. Caesar Flickerman

Caesar Flickerman

As the TV host for The Hunger Games, Caesar Flickerman is kind of a stand-in for all media. He’s extravagant, over the top, and caught somewhere between soulless and friendly.

We get the sense that he actually likes the Tributes, and tries to help them present well to the public. Ultimately though, he’s part of the show, which makes him a dislikable character, but a memorable one at that. 

17. Annie Cresta

Annie Cresta

This is a tragic series, and Annie Cresta might be its most tragic character. She’s haunted by past trauma; she’s in an obviously-doomed romance with Finnick Odair; and she’s trapped in conflict right until the end.

Annie at least gets a somewhat happy ending, though, when she survives the rebellion and has a child. This actually makes her a pretty compelling symbol of hope within the story. 

16. Wiress

Wiress hunger games

Beetee’s science-minded fellow Victor from District 3 plays a key role in Catching Fire. Sure, she’s more or less delirious, but her “tick tock” repetition helps Katniss realize the arena is organized like a giant clock. That’s a significant contribution.

Wiress isn’t around too long to do too much more, but we get the feeling she was a good egg. 

15. Boggs

Boggs hunger games

Boggs is kind of just tossed into Mockingjay (Part I and II) as a rebellion super-soldier. We don’t learn all that much about him, but it’s nice to have a fighter in the fray who isn’t just another Tribute or Victor.

Plus, he’s played by Mahershala Ali, which makes him a total badass (biased, we know). Anyone assigned to protect Katniss has to be believably capable, and Boggs is that and then some. 

14. Mags Flanagan

Mags Flanagan

Oh, Mags. We have a soft spot for her from the start given that she once served as Finnick’s mentor. There’s also an irresistibly sweet dynamic between the two of them as they head into the Quarter Quell in Catching Fire.

At that point, Finnick is basically serving as her protector, and we as the audience want her protected! It’s she who makes a sacrifice in the end though, helping to save Peeta. Mags is yet another tragic character, but one of the story’s most selfless. 

13. Effie Trinket

effie Trinket

Effie Trinket is a bit like Caesar Flickerman: She’s good-natured, but still a creature of the Capitol. Where Flickerman is wrapped up in his own role though, Effie genuinely cares for Katniss and Peeta.

She may be bizarre, and her priorities might be odd (it’s all about impressions with Effie), but she wants to help. In her own extravagant, dippy way, Effie is one of the heroes’ most consistent allies, making her one of our favorite characters to date.

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12. Beetee

Beetee hunger games

Where would we be without Beetee, the smartest of the bunch? The storytelling master key who casually solves all problems. Sure, he’s very convenient. But he manages it in a believable way as a career science-and-tech guru from District 4.

Plus, he’s a nice contrast to most of our other heroes. Where they work with muscle and tactile skill, he’s a mild-mannered, soft-spoken genius who can still bring down an arena and hijack Capitol broadcasts. 

11. Gale Hawthorne

gale hunger games

It’s hard to get a handle on Gale. Frankly, we’re still making up our minds about him. On the plus side, he’s a courageous rebel and a fierce protector of Katniss and her family. On the other, he’s a little possessive and gets too swept up in rebellion for his own good.

Gale has a rough exit from the story when Katniss holds him partially responsible for Prim’s death. But all in all, he does an awful lot to help the Everdeens. 

10. Plutarch Heavensbee 

Plutarch Heavensbee

Our mysterious rebel leader is one of the most smartest figures in the saga. He manages to plot an uprising right under President Snow’s nose. He presides over the Quarter Quell even as he works to rescue Tributes from it. And he sets up much of the Mockingjay rebellion.

The only knock on him is that he seems almost conveniently effective – a bit too good to be true. 

9. Alma Coin

Alma Coin

In some ways more sinister than President Snow, Alma Coin is one of the most complex characters in the saga. At first, she’s a capable (if rigid) leader. Eventually, she’s revealed to be every bit as power-hungry and dangerous as Snow himself.

One of the most-hated Hunger Games characters, there’s nothing fun about Alma Coin, of course. But she’s certainly a memorable villain in the series. 

8. Cinna

cinna hunger games

The man who turned costume design into myth-making. If it weren’t for Cinna’s edgy, eye-catching designs, Peeta and Katniss may never have stood out to the Capitol (or Hunger Games viewers) the way they did. Katniss may not have had the same power as a symbol.

Most important though, Cinna is a true friend to Katniss. He lends precious support when she needs it most. 

7. Peeta Mellark

Peeta Mellark

Peeta is of course, one of the true heroes of the Hunger Games saga. The guy is noble to a fault, knows what’s right and wrong, and puts Katniss’ well-being ahead of his own. He’s also a lot more openly vulnerable than your average male hero.

Peeta is pretty savvy at playing the Capitol’s game from day one, so he definitely deserves top-10 recognition. He’d rank higher if he didn’t need to be saved from something every 18 minutes, though. 

6. President Snow

President Snow

President Snow may linger in the background for parts of the series. He may also have a ridiculous name (Corolianus? Really?). Even so, he’s a bone-chilling villain who makes the whole saga better. He orchestrates death like a puppet master. He smells like blood and roses.

The real key to Snow’s character, though, is that he’s bored. With his power, he preoccupies himself tormenting Katniss as much as actually trying to stop her. It’s almost Joker-esque. 

5. Rue

rue hunger games

How can we not love Rue? A sympathetic character and kind and innocent child trying to steer clear of danger. She’s also a reflection of Primrose, someone who Katniss naturally feels protective over.

Sadly, Rue is doomed to a tragic end, but in some ways, she sparks the saga. Her death is one of the seeds for Katniss’ evolution into a revolutionary hero. She’s certainly one of the most-loved characters in The Hunger Games.    

4. Johanna Mason

Johanna Mason

Johanna Mason is a certified badass. We were cautious with her at first, because Victors shouldn’t really be trusted. But between allying with Beetee and Mags, ripping out Katniss’s tracker, and helping Katniss and Co. on their way to take the Capitol, she proves herself a valiant resistance fighter.

We could almost imagine a whole separate telling of the Hunger Games saga from Johanna’s perspective: a past Victor watching the rise of Katniss, seizing an opportunity to get involved, and making it all the way to the end. 

3. Finnick Odair

Finnick Odair

Gale and Peeta may be the ‘heroes’ of this story, but Finnick is so much cooler than either one. In fact, it was difficult not ranking him as the best Hunger Games character overall.

At first, Finnick is the dangerous, athletic Victor who actually seems like a good dude. And the more we get to know him, the more we adore him. Finnick is about as capable as anyone in the story, but above all else, he’s good: to Mags, to Annie Crestia, to Katniss, and to the people. Fans don’t mind that he’s not bad to look at, either. 

2. Haymitch Abernathy 

Haymitch Abernathy

Haymitch may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but to us, he’s awesome, unforgettable, and one of the best Hunger Games characters. He’s a drunken Victor who’s learned and resented the ways of the upper class.

Not only does his character make perfect sense in this world, but he also makes for a perfect ally for Katniss and Peeta. He also offers some of the best comic relief in the movies, whether it’s from his shady burns, bluntness or witty sarcasm.

1. Katniss Everdeen 

Katniss Everdeen 

How could anyone but the Girl on Fire top the list? Katniss Everdeen is indeed our best Hunger Games character. She ticks every box for a powerful lead character in a fantasy or dystopian adventure. She cares more for those she loves than for herself, and courage is part of her core.

Being more capable than she realizes, Katniss is relatable, yet also someone to aspire to be more like. It’s safe to say she’s an ideal heroine in a series that wouldn’t be half as strong without one. 

Our ranking may include the most cliché best characters from The Hunger Games, but your list may look a whole lot different!

Perhaps Effie’s absurdity gets your vote, or maybe you enjoy Cato’s deadly villainy? Let us know how you would rank these characters in the comments below!


Tale Teller

  • Angela Stephanou

    After completing her BA in Communication, Media and Film studies, Angela launched Tell Tales Online, and now writes and oversees the content and strategy across the site. As a pop culture junkie, she follows more celebs than real-life people, her guilty pleasure is watching The Kardashians, but she's also a fan of Marvel and Game of Thrones.

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