Until Dawn: All Playable Characters, Ranked

Released back in 2015, Until Dawn was a massive success that captivated gamers due to its immersive and realistic visuals and nail-biting horror. The game also served as a breakout title for Developer Supermassive Games, a studio that has built a reputation for delivering action and horror packed cinematic games that feature fantastic motion-capture performances from well-known actors.

The narrative of Until Dawn focuses on a group of teenagers who visit their friends' Cabin Lodge up in the mountains. Things quickly take a turn for the worst and the teenagers are then forced to survive the night until help can arrive. While all the teenagers trapped in the Lodge have a role to play throughout the game, some characters prove their worth and are more likable and useful than others. And with their upcoming horror title The Quarry introducing a new set of young characters, let's reflect on the teens of Until Dawn.

Spoilers for the plot of Until Dawn ahead

9 Jessica "Jess" Riley

Jess is the classic damsel in distress of Until Dawn, one who unfortunately is never really given the chance to evolve and outgrow this initial identity. Her introduction at the beginning of the game presents her as an insecure girlfriend to Mike, one that picks fights with his ex-girlfriend Emily with great immaturity. She is also a big supporter of the prank on Hannah which then causes her and Beth’s death.

She has little impact on the outcome of the game or any of the multiple endings. In fact, it's very easy to have a successful playthrough without her staying alive. She can also be killed at many points in the game, even as early as Chapter Four.

8 Beth Washington

Beth is Hannah’s twin sister and who you control during the initial moments of the game. She follows Hannah out into the cold after the friends prank her and is unfortunately killed alongside her sister shortly afterward.

While she only features for a brief moment, Hannah is shown to be a strong and capable young woman. She stands up to her friends and doesn’t hesitate to follow her sister into the snow. Beth is the only playable character in Until Dawn who cannot be saved and whose death, alongside Hannah's, serves as the main mystery and foundation for the narrative of the whole game.

7 Ashley Brown

Like Jess, Ashley does little in the way of helping the group of teenagers survive the night. Instead, she mainly serves as a source of hysteria and panic. She can die at many points throughout the game and can always get other characters killed depending on her decisions, words, and actions.

Her emotions often get the better of her, so much so that it puts her friends and fellow teenagers at risk. While she helps warn the group about the existence of the Wendigo she mostly looms around them, rather than taking any initiative.

6 Josh Washington

Josh is a tortured soul, one that is unable to move on from the deaths of his sisters, and is haunted by the events that took place at the Lodge one year before the main narrative of the game. Actor Rami Malek does a superb job of bringing to light his internal turmoil of Josh and garnering sympathy for him despite the horrible actions and plans he puts in place to get back at his friends.

While he may catalyze the horrific events the group must endure, Josh’s story is heartbreaking, and he is without a doubt the most nuanced character to feature in Until Dawn. He also facilitates some of the best and hardest quick time events and decisions. Ones that will see all gamers struggle and grappling with them, even after they've made their decision.

5 Matthew "Matt" Taylor

Matt is a jock with a heart of gold and is easily one of the more likable characters. As Emily’s boyfriend, he shows a great capacity to protect and support her and their friends.

The biggest impact he has throughout the game is assisting Emily in restoring power to the radio tower and in calling the Rangers for help. After the tower is destroyed and the two are separated, Matt’s journey becomes largely secluded from the others and the main storyline. However, if Jess is still alive Matt will find her in the mines and help her while they both venture through and escape to the surface.

4 Chris Hartley

Chris is the epitome of the nerdy guy who becomes a hero to save his friends and gets the girl stereotype. He is quick-witted, loves to make jokes and is often seen to be getting on the nerves of the other group members.

As Josh’s best friend, Chris's role at the beginning of the game is central to Josh’s storyline and reveal as the one causing chaos at the Lodge. And while initially, he finds himself right in the middle of Josh’s elaborate pranks, Chris soon is thrown into the deep end and required to put his safety on the line to save his friends.

3 Emily Davis

While she may not be initially likable and comes across as an antagonistic character, Emily undergoes a great narrative arc across the events of Until Dawn. When things take a turn for the worst, she is resourceful and proactive and plays a huge role in saving the group of teenagers.

What makes her such a compelling character is how she manages to navigate the horrors of the mines and mountainside on her own. While she demands protection when with her boyfriend Matt, she shows courage and independence when they are separated and shows off great survival instincts. She is responsible for radioing the rangers, ensuring she and her friends are rescued when Dawn finally arrives.

2 Michael "Mike" Munroe

First introduced as the goofy and arrogant ladies’ man, Mike’s transformation and development throughout the game elevates him from his initial characterization. While his initial motivations for his bravery revolve around him wanting to save his girlfriend Jess, his heroism quickly extends to ensuring all his friends are safe and that they’re able to survive the night.

Mike’s actions throughout the game and the decisions you make when controlling him can greatly impact the overall outcome and who lives or dies. He’ll often be the one forced to make the hard and important decisions and the protector of the group and plays a key role in the quest to keep everyone alive.

1 Samantha "Sam" Giddings

As the only character not involved in their initial prank on Hannah other than Josh and Chris, Sam is immediately likable and sympathetic. Actress Hayden Panettiere does a fantastic job of portraying Sam and her unwavering morality, strength, and empathetic nature.

While she has little to do at the beginning of the game, Sam quickly becomes one of the game's main protagonists next to Mike. In particular, her relationship with Josh plays a key role in understanding his experiences and trauma after the death of his sisters. Her actions and decisions directly influence who lives and dies and in the final moments of the game, she is the one who holds the power.

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