How to Unlock All No Return Characters in TLOU 2 Remastered

Play as Tommy, Joel, Lev, and more fan favorite characters.

by Diego Perez
The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered Lev No Return

There might not be a ton of new content in The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered, but the No Return roguelike mode is the absolute star of the show. Not only does this mode feature randomized encounters with various enemies, but you can also play as characters other than Ellie and Abby.

Most of the game’s cast is unlockable as playable characters in No Return, including fan favorites like Joel and Tommy. Each character has a unique playstyle as well, starting their runs with different equipment and getting different buffs to specific combat abilities. Joel excels at melee combat, for example, but he can’t dodge like Ellie and Abby can.

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How to Unlock Every Character in TLOU 2 No Return

You’ll start No Return with only Ellie and Abby available as playable characters, but you’ll quickly begin to unlock more of the TLOU 2 roster as you complete runs.

CharacterHow to Unlock
DinaComplete 2 encounters as Ellie.
JesseComplete 3 encounters as Dina.
TommyComplete 3 encounters with Jesse.
JoelComplete 4 encounters with Tommy.
LevComplete 2 encounters with Abby.
YaraComplete 3 encounters with Lev.
MelComplete 3 encounters with Yara.
MannyComplete 4 encounters with Mel.

Unlocking characters is as simple as completing encounters. An encounter is just a single level in a run, so you don’t have to successfully complete entire runs in order to unlock new characters. You don’t have to do the encounters in a single run, either, so failing isn’t a huge deal.

There are more specific challenges available for each character that go deeper than just completing encounters, but these are only for unlocking cosmetic items like skins. Ellie and Abby in particular have a ton of shirts that reference other PlayStation games like Killzone and Jak and Daxter. Most of these skins can be unlocked with points earned by playing the game, though.

The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered doesn’t add a ton of new stuff to the original game, but No Return is worth the price of admission alone. In our review of the game, we called No Return the highlight of the experience, saying “The Last of Us Part 2 Remastered adds some additional visual flair to a game that didn’t really need any, but the new No Return roguelike mode makes it well worth the upgrade.” Getting to play as Joel and other characters from the story is a ton of fun, and there’s a surprising amount of depth to this side mode if you put in the time.

- This article was updated on January 18th, 2024

About The Author

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Currently serving as an Associate Editor at Attack of the Fanboy, Diego Perez has been writing about video games since 2018, specializing in live service games like Destiny and Final Fantasy XIV. His work is featured at publications like Game Rant and The Outerhaven, but Attack of the Fanboy is home to his best work. When he's not editing or writing guides, he's yelling about Ape Escape or grinding Lost Sectors in Destiny. Plus, he has a Bachelor of Science in Telecommunication Media Studies for Texas A&M University.