Lone Survivor, referred to in-game as "You", is the protagonist that has been surviving in isolation for an unknown amount of time when the story begins. He occupies a room in apartment 206, although he claims that he is not the original inhabitant.
Very little background information is given about the main character; traces of his personality are gleaned mainly through interaction with other objects and, at times, people. "You" is often, almost irrationally, concerned about not pilfering from his apartment's former occupants - to the point where he seems angry at himself for even considering it. He refuses to take/wear the clothing that is found in the apartment (the shoes and jacket are particularly noteworthy), instead opting to go several days (or weeks) wearing the same clothing. However, he has no problem taking objects found in the other rooms (scissors, keys, etc) or searching their closets. It might be that he only takes things that are required for his survival, but a few items can be acquired that seemingly have no purpose (such as the cat doll). When given the option to search a cash register, he remarks to himself how useless currency is.
"You" is very particular about where he sleeps. Despite there being a number of bedrooms in the apartment complex, he only feels safe enough to sleep in the bedroom he occupies in room 206.
"You" is very self aware of the grim circumstance he finds himself in, and realizes what he needs in order to survive. This includes scavenging for food, avoiding the infected, and searching the immediate surroundings for other survivors. When, and if, he runs into other "survivors" (both real or otherwise), his initial reactions are typically that of relief and concern."You" can only defend himself using flares and a pistol; when unequipped with either, hiding or running are the only options. One shot with the pistol is loud enough to alarm all the enemies in the surrounding area, often times creating a swarm. Since several bullets are required to down a single enemy, and reloading leaves you extremely vulnerable, avoidance is often preferred in crowded corridors. "You" seems to prefer the pistol to other forms of firearms. When given the option to investigate larger, stronger firearms at the gunstore, "You" simply rationalizes that the other firearms are either too loud, too small, or too large.
"You" is hinted at suffering from depression, a side effect of being the sole survivor of an apocalyptic hellscape. As such, his mental health is questionable. He often hallucinates, and at times, has a hard time distinguishing what is real and what is not. Regardless, he is not crazy—well, not in the traditional sense. "You" has a strong desire to live, seek companionship, eat, and survive. He will also refuse to reenter areas that are too terrifying for him, such as the tunnel he finds in the beginning of the game or the basement after being chased out of there by a large monster. He does not wear shoes for stealth purposes. For some reason, he does not have any trouble with the zombies' disease, as they only hit at him, but he seems to be immune to it. He also does not die from starvation or thirst, although his sanity deteriorates and he complains about it. This could mean that he is resistant to death by starvation, disease, and thirst.
Early "You"EditBack in 2010, an early tech demo of Lone Survivor was available for download on Jasper Byrne's blog. In it, an early version of "You" without his mask can be seen.
In 2012, initial concept art of "You" shooting a zombie was shared. He can be seen saying "Killin' zombies... Don't get no easier. But I gotta do it, if I wanna eat."