Wondering how to unlock characters in Back 4 Blood? Here's how to get all of the cleaners fast.

Back 4 Blood Cleaners: How to Unlock All Characters

Wondering how to unlock characters in Back 4 Blood? Here's how to get all of the cleaners fast.
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How to unlock all characters in Back 4 Blood isn’t entirely obvious. While fans of Left 4 Dead will have an easy time with most of the systems found in Back 4 Blood, the spiritual successor from Turtle Rock Studios has included some surprises of their own. 

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That’s not true if you want to unlock all Back 4 Blood  characters, however, as the game sort of hides how to do that. Here’s what you need to know to unlock all eight Back 4 Blood characters.

How To Unlock All Characters In Back 4 Blood

When you first jump into the game, you’ll find eight heroes, or “Cleaners,” in the roster, but only four are immediately available: Evangelo, Walker, Holly, and Mom.

Since each character has their own set of built-in skills (not to mention clothing options and personalities), you’ll surely want to get all characters fast.

You’ll need to complete the first chapter of Act 1, called “The Devil’s Return”, to unlock the other four Cleaners: Doc, Hoffman, Jim, and Karlee.

The Devil’s Return chapter consists of the game’s first four levels if played in proper order. They are:

  • Resurgence
  • Tunnel Of Blood
  • Pain Train
  • The Crossing

Back 4 Blood Unlock Characters1

As soon as you complete all four of those levels, you’ll unlock a new story cinematic that introduces the second foursome of heroes, who will join forces with the starting crew at Fort Hope and immediately become available all at once. 

After that, you need only to decide who you’d like to make your go-to Cleaner.

Cleaner Traits

Here are the Cleaners’ unique skills, which gives them each light class-based traits. Each hero has two unique traits that apply only to themselves, as well as one team trait which applies to the whole group.

Evangelo’s Traits

  • Can quickly break out of grabs once every 60 seconds
  • +25% stamina regen
  • Team trait: +5% team move speed 

Walker’s Traits

  • Precision kills grant Walker +20% accuracy for five seconds
  • +10% damage
  • Team trait: +10 team health

Holly’s Traits

  • Recovers 10 stamina when she kills a Ridden (basic zombie type)
  • +10% damage resistance
  • Team trait: +25% stamina

Mom’s Traits

  • Can instantly revive a teammate once per level
  • +1 support inventory
  • Team trait: +1 team extra life

Doc’s Traits

  • Can heal each teammate for 25 health once per level
  • +20% healing efficiency
  • Team trait: +25% team trauma resistance

Hoffman’s Traits

  • Has a chance to find ammo whenever he kills a Ridden
  • +1 offensive inventory
  • Team trait: +10% max ammo capacity

Jim’s Traits

  • Precision kills grant Jim 2.5% stacking damage until he takes damage
  • +25% aim down sights speed
  • Team trait: +10% weakspot damage

Karlee’s Traits

  • Can sense nearby hazards and mutations (special infected)
  • +1 quick inventory item
  • Team trait: +50% team use speed

Once you’re in a group where players have unlocked more than the starting four characters, you may want to consider balancing these heroes’ skills to enhance each other’s play.

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For example, if you know you’re heading into a difficult level, bringing Doc and Jim may help keep your group standing up and taking out mutations quickly. Experiment with each hero and see what works for you and your group of Cleaners, then keep it here as we bring you more Back 4 Blood guides across the next several days and beyond.

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Mark Delaney
Mark is a dad, husband, bicyclist, animal rights activist, and a gamer, of course. You can find him on all platforms covering co-op, indies, horror, battle royale, or whatever else he's obsessing over right now. In addition to GameSkinny, he's been published on GameSpot, IGN, GamesRadar, EGM, Escapist, Official Xbox Magazine, and a bunch of other great outlets.