The main characterers of the Afterworld are the Shoemakers:
- Russell Shoemaker - Protagonist of Afterworld
- Janelle Shoemaker - Russell's wife and mother to his daughter, Kizzy.
- Kizzy Shoemaker - Daughter of Russell and Janelle Shoemaker.
New York City
A list of characters in New York City:
- Glenn Wilkins - A 44-year-old British citizen in New York for business.
- Officer Delondre Baines - A NYPD mounted police officer.
- Mr. Tanaka - A Japanese immigrant and World War II atomic bomb survivor.
- Battery Bill - Just embarked on a lucrative trade business with Flashlight Sue.
- Flashlight Sue - Joined Battery Bill as a business partner after The Fall.
- Marla Baker - Lost her husband to The Fall and is a mother of Jason Baker.
- Jason Baker - Marla's seven-year-old son who is rescued by Russell from The Pack.
A list of characters at Philadelphia:
- Eli - Lost everything he had in 1999 for reasons he does not disclose. He became homeless in NYC shortly thereafter.
- Jack Hastings - Russell raids Hastings's mansion for vital supplies and information.
- Ed Hanley - Astronomer from Virginia and a fugitive from a religious cult that was created after The Fall.
- Horseman #1 - Not much is known about the first horseman during Philadelphia episodes, except that he is one of Ed's hunters.
A list of characters from New Eden, Pennsylvania:
- John Daggert - Former insurance salesman. The self-appointed leader and prophet of New Eden.
- Abby - A home schooled teenager before "The Fall." She is now one of JD's loyal disciples.
- Luther Gates - A former mailman originally from Maryland. Reluctant occupant of New Eden because he was captured by the Horsemen.
- Horsemen - New Eden's assassins/kidnappers.
A list of characters at Aurora, Ohio:
- Terri - Dedicated mom-turned-sniper, who lived her whole life in Aurora.
- Sanjay Pathak - Popular suburban pharmacist; born in England.
- Jeff Kettleman - A salesman-turned-hedonist.
- Horseman #1 - Former National Guardsman turned New Edenite.
A list of character(s) from Southern Ohio near Peebles, Ohio:
- Feral Boy - A mysterious boy who appears before Russell several times during his journey.
A list of characters from Louisville, Kentucky:
- Arnold Schaffer - Founder and leader of the New World Historians; travelling to document the history of The Fall.
- Contrarian - Stalker of the New World Historians.
A list of characters from Nashville, Tennessee:
- Charles Keyes - Cold-hearted New World Historians; dispatched to track Russell.
- Subu - Former mercenary/guerilla fighter wanted by Interpol. Skilled tracker, teamed with Charles to hunt down Russell.
- Alice Sivley - A simple woman who Went from rags to riches after The Fall.
- Travis Jay - Engineering student working at a gas station the night of The Fall.
- Horsemen #2 - Nothing is known of the Second Horsemen.
A list of characters from Memphis, Tennessee:
- Eli - Still wandering the country searching for the elusive perfect taffy; has taken up residence in Graceland.
- Karen Thomas - A local hospital worker working to find a cure for a flesh-eating virus.
- Aaron Canton - An expert in blood-borne diseases whose own blood may hold the key to unlocking the mystery of The Fall.
- Ted Murphy - A hot-tempered college gridion hero whom Russell encounters when he joins the Nurse's Control Group.
- Ellen Murphy - The newly-wed bride of Ted Murphy.
A list of characters from the Ozarks:
- Charles Keyes
- Ellen Murphy
- Donald Powell III - An affluent businessman turned bounty hunter who pursues Russell through the Ozarks.