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Staff Sergeant Henry "Black" BlackburnThe hero of Battlefield 3, Henry Blackburn is a US 1st Recon Marine who propels the narrative of the story through his flashbacks. He is the player character for the majority of the game's singleplayer missions.
- I Did What I Had to Do: He kills his own commanding officer after encountering Dima in the Iranian villa mission to protect Dima and the mission.
- The Hero
- Heroic Mime: Averted. We get his side of the story constantly.
- Played straight when you control him, though.
- One-Man Army: In some missions played straight. In others he is part of a fireteam, the Misfit 1-3 squad or even a platoon sized force.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Disappears off the face of the Earth in Battlefield 4
Sergeant Jonathan "Jono" MillerAnother playable character, in the tank mission "Thunder Run".
- Empathy Doll Shot: The shot of his son's dinosaur.
- Sacrificial Lion: At the end of his mission, his tank is disabled and he is captured by the enemy. He is then shown being executed on camera by Solomon and Faruk Al-Bashir. His execution drives the Marines to strike back at Al-Bashir with extreme prejudice, thus kick-starting the climax of the game.
- Weapon of Choice: His Abrams tank.
Lieutenant Jennifer Colby HawkinsYet another playable character, in the jet fighter mission "Going Hunting". Callsign is "Wedge".
- Affirmative Action Girl: The first female player character in the Battlefield series.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: She's killed off rather unceremoniously in the Battlefield 4 trailer.
- Meaningful Name: The name "Hawk" for a character who is the weapons officer in fighter jet.
Private First Class David MontesA non-player character who appears alongside Blackburn in several of the infantry missions.
- Deadpan Snarker: He immediately endears himself to players with his banter.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: In the final mission in the game, he is the one who helps Blackburn pursue and stop Solomon, but is killed in the aftermath of the car crash.
- The Lancer
- Weapon of Choice: An M240 Machine Gun.
Private First Class Christian MatkovicA non-player character who is part of the Misfit squad.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: Is killed by an SU-25 Frogfoot strafing run.
- Southern-Fried Private: His name may be a little odd for one, but he definitely has the requisite accent.
Captain Quinton ColeCommanding officer of Blackburn's unit in Iran.
- Glory Seeker: Unapologetically so; he pushes Black and Campo to their absolute limits in dangerous enemy territory just so he can take Al-Bashir in alive and look like a hero, hopefully earning the promotion he thinks he's entitled to.
- The Neidermeyer
- Unfriendly Fire: Black kills him to help cover Dima's escape, so that the two of them can work to stop Solomon's terror plot without intervention.
Snake 6-6Codename for a couple of Marines involved in high-value operations such as assisting fellow Marines in defending American military camps and rescuing hostages and capturing PLR leaders. One of them in Caucasian and the other is African-American.
Glavnoye razvedyvatel'noye upravleniye
Dmitri "Dima" Mayakovsky (Russian: Дмитрий Маяковский)A Spetsnaz-trained Special Forces career soldier and special agent in the employ of the Russian intelligence agency GRU, who may be beginning to question where his loyalties lie. He spent most of his time with Vympel.
- Driven to Suicide: Appears to be about to kill himself at the end of the game before a knock on his door stops him.
- Elites Are More Glamorous: Before he became a GRU agent, he was a Spetsnaz soldier. Not just any Spetsnaz soldier either, but part of the Vympel unit, said to be the elite of the elite.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: Unceremoniously killed off in a cable car crash in Battlefield 4 that leaves the other three characters unharmed.
- Foregone Conclusion: The suicide scene fades to black before we find out what Dima does, but it was known prior to the game's release that the tie-in novel was about what he did after the game, so we pretty much know he didn't actually blow his brains out.
- Military Maverick: His GRU superiors, in the novel, had sent him to Iran to train Iranian Revolutionary Guards after Dima personally assassinated a GRU station chief in Paris after learning of his plans to defect to MI:6 and shot a Russian soldier for killing French nurses in Afghanistan while he was on drugs.
- Weapon of Choice: Various firearms, but notable is his enormous meat cleaver/fish gutter knife that he always has.
Vladimir KamarivskyLike Dima, he's a former Spetsnaz operator of some renown.
- Boisterous Bruiser: Acts like one
- Boxed Crook: He was sprung from his incarceration in Butyrka prison (for drug trafficking) for the express purpose of serving on Dima's team. He thinks it was a prank gone wrong
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: The right side of his face has a straight, long scar that goes from the corner of his eye to the cheek, but the left side of his face has many vicious-looking, intersecting scars as well as a possibly-blind left eye. He's a good guy though.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: To elaborate, an RPG blast sends bits of shrapnel flying at high speeds towards Dima, Kiril and Vladimir. The result is a piece of rebar or piece of a fence slamming through his chest.
- Sacrificial Lamb: He's killed by an RPG blast in Paris while hunting down the stolen nuclear device, leaving Dima severely shaken..
- The Prankster: Shares this spot with Kiril.
- Dark and Troubled Past: Kiril can't hear very well as he was captured and tortured by pro-independence rebels in Chechnya during his tour of duty in the 1990s before he was rescued.
- Only One Name: His last name is never revealed.
- The Prankster: Shares this spot with Vladimir.
- Weapon of Choice: The AS Val.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Nowhere to be seen in the sequel.
- Original Character: He only appears in the novel version, taking Kiril's position in the 3-man GRU team infiltrating Paris.
- Original Character: Only included in the novel version of the game.
- Original Character: Only included in the novel version of the game.
People's Liberation and Resistance
SolomonA mysterious terrorist who appears to be Faruk Al-Bashir's right hand man, but has his own hidden agenda.
- The Bad Guy Wins: Battlefield 4 shows that Solomon's plan to start a global war between the U.S. and Russia was a success, despite all of Dima and Blackburn's efforts.
- Big Bad
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: He's got it pretty bad. According to the novel, he started out as a foreign mujahid in Afghanistan who was picked up and drafted by the Russians, serving under them for a while before defecting to the US in '94, and proceeded to serve America for the next 20 years before betraying them as well with his nuke plot.
- Hand Cannon: His Taurus .44 revolver. Used to lethal effect against Montes.
- Manipulative Bastard: "He uses everyone!"
- The Mole: Posed as a US whistleblower who fed them intel on Al-Bashir, but turned out to be a terrorist himself.
- Omni Glot: Solomon can speak many languages, including American English fluently, which was the reason why he studied in America under the care of American missionaries from a refugee camp in Lebanon in the novel.
- Loss of Identity: Part of his origin backstory. Solomon was given his current name due to his omniglot ability.
- Straw Nihilist: Likes to lecture his victims about the inevitability of death and how meaningless their efforts are.
- Weapon of Choice: The aforementioned .44 magnum in the game, and a sword in the book.
Hamid Al-ZakirA high-raking figure in the PLR, he appears in the co-op campaign where he willingly defects from the group.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Surrenders himself due to his family being in danger.
Abu MuhammadA PLR fighter sent to Paris where he states a hostage crisis and faces off against the GIGN.
Abdul RahmanA high-ranking PLR leader in charge of its operations in the Greater Paris Area.
- Big Bad: Of the co-op campaign.
- Human Shield: He takes one of the PCs as a human shield when Snake 6-6 corners him.
- The Dreaded: Masterminded the PLR's terror campaign in the UK.
Gazul HalenThe man in charge of gathering intelligence for the PLR. Gets killed during a GRU-backed op.
Faruk Al-BashirA former Iranian Air Force General who deserted and went rogue, Faruk Al-Bashir went on to become the leader of the PLR, and eventually became President of Iran itself in a violent coup after a catastrophic earthquake destabilised the country's government.
- Anonymous Ringer: He looks nothing like him, but he seems to be a pretty transparent substitute for Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The way the war in Iran plays out, along with his aspirations of acquiring WMDs, could make him a probable expy of Saddam Hussein as well.
- The Generalissimo
- President Evil
- Smug Snake
Amir KaffarovThough he started out as a complete nobody in the Soviet Air Force, Amir Kaffarov is now possibly the richest arms dealer in all of Russia. He brokers the deal that gives Solomon and the PLR their arsenal of portable nukes.
- Dirty Coward: Not only does he flee when Dima and his men come after him, but he also tries to offer him the contents of his Swiss bank account before immediately selling out Solomon and his whole plan in the hopes of being let go.