The player can unlock additional characters by earning points in the most current level of Leap Day. All characters differ in physical appearance and have no distinct behaviours. They all have total of three unlockable selfie poses.
Each character moves left to right, turning back when they hit a wall. The player can make their character jump by tapping on the screen. Characters can make one additional jump while in the air, in which they curl into a spinning ball. The double jump count is reset upon leaving any surface. This includes touching the ground or wall, jumping on an enemy, bouncing off a spring or getting a boost from a jump bubble. It also resets when going through a teleporter.
When characters come in contact with a wall, they grab onto it and slide down until they jump away from it or interact with something else. If the player does not jump when sliding down a wall, the character falls back to the ground directly below or starts walking in the other direction if the wall meets the ground.
The playable characters are vulnerable to all hazards and enemies and die immediately upon direct contact with most of them from the side. Some enemies can be killed by jumping on top of their heads, which rebound the character upwards. Upon death, a character is respawned at the last checkpoint the player activated.
When playing the game itself, the player can hit the camera icon located just below the pause button at the top right corner of the screen to take a selfie. This takes a screenshot of the game screen as the player is currently viewing it, but replaces the character's in-game sprite with one of the character's selfie poses. If the player has no selfie pose for that particular character they are taking a picture with, the screenshot will simply display the character's sprite as presented in-game.
Once the player takes a selfie pose, they have the option of sharing the selfie or cancelling and resuming the game. If they choose to share or save the screenshot, the previewed selfie pose is retained, along with the addition of the words "Leap Day" in red followed by smaller white text reading, "A new level every day!"
Selfie poses are one of the two prizes that can be obtained when the player fulfils their progress bar, however, they can only be unlocked for characters which the player has already obtained. The player can keep track of the number of selfies they have per character based on the number of white camera icons that are shown directly below the character on the selector.
| Yolk|| The default character in the game. Yolk is yellow with a round head,|
a belly button and a large green rectangular nose.
| Lick|| A green character inspired by pterodactyls.|
It has a large beak, a tail and a long tongue.
| La Beef||A blue cow-like character with two curved horns, a large pink snout, a small tail and a hairy chest. They are similar to pigs.|| |
| Kepi|| A green creature wearing a yellow namesake hat with a grey spike on top.|
He wears a red bobble hat under the kepi.
| Meep|| A pink bird with a large beak, two small wings and|
a round feather on top of its head.
| Smooch||A grey creature with round blue lips.|| |
| Solder_26||Solder_26 is a silver robot with a rectangular head and a green square nose which resembles Yolk's nose. Inside his head is a red battery.|
| Root||A pink radish whose head is circular and has a mouth and a single eye. It has green leaves on top of its head.|
| Scalp||A purple character wearing white skull. His body structure allows him to make himself more muscular and taller.|
|Grill||A crimson dragon with blue spikes from its head to its tail.|
|Zweiclops||An indigo-coloured creature whose head consists of two vertically-placed white eyes, two spike-like horns on the side of its head, and one on top. His mouth is located between his eyes.|
|Logga||A brown wooden character with a cylindrical head that has two holes as eyes and a green leaf on top of its head.|
|Rasbunny||A cyan-coloured rabbit.|
|Venus||A flytrap with a red head, white teeth, and a blue tongue. It has a green body.|
|Croak||A light green frog with pink lips and large white eyes.|
|Slab||A yellow rock character.|
|Whip||A pink ice-cream character with blue lips.|
|Glug||A green character with lake monster-like ears.|
|Flake||A snowman with a black top hat and orange carrot nose.|
|Tuft||A troll with grey fur, brown horns and a blue nose.|
|Char||A red demon with a flame on the top of its head, wings on his back and a purple nose.|
|Turret||A grey character that has a head that resembles a turret and wears a red cape.|
|Barley||A scarecrow with a brown head stuffed with hay. It has a green body with wooden sticks for arms and a leg.|
|Mc Cloud||A cloud-like character with a white fluffy head and large pink lips (similar to Smooch's lips).|
|Victor||A living golden trophy that looks a lot like the Golden Cup seen when completing a level, though the only difference is that he has no mouth. In his character selection sprite, he has a stand.|
|Trunk||A creature with a purple body whose head is a slightly open treasure chest with visible white eyes inside.|
|Tickles||An orange character who looks a lot like Yolk but has a purple triangle for a nose and has no belly button. On his head he has a white feather with a purple end.|
|Jock||A purple character wearing a white American football helmet with a red stripe down the middle and red shoulder pads.||File:Leap Day Jock Run.png|
|Shroom||A blue-grey coloured mushroom. The mushroom's head is pink/red with blue/grey spots. It is tall and thin versus the other characters so far. It has no arms.|
|Bleep||A grey computer robot whose head is a square and has fluorescent green/yellow screen with its face on it. It has a short pink antenna on top of his head and a pink button on it round body. It has no arms.|
|Felon||A dark grey ball and chain wearing a prison uniform.|
|Chuckles||A purple character with dripping clown face paint on. He has bright pink lips, a green rectangle nose, and a pink bow on his head.|
|Helm||A grey/lavender coloured character that has a giant white eye in the middle of its head and wears a large golden helmet that covers the rest of its head and has a spike on top.|
|Platform Panic||A cameo of a panic bot from Platform Panic.|
|Redungeon||A cameo of Sir Gylbard from Redungeon.||File:Leap Day Redungeon Run.png|
|Rust Bucket||A cameo of the main character from Rust Bucket.|
|Gunbrick||This cameo from Gunbrick (mobile) is shown without his vehicle in the game.||File:Leap Day Gunbrick Run.png|
|Ram||A pig-like creature with a silver helmet.||File:Leap Day Ram Run.png|
|Ultimate Briefcase||A cameo of Tucker from Ultimate Briefcase.||File:Leap Day Ultimate Briefcase Run.png|
|Silly Sausage||A cameo of the stretchy dog from Silly Sausage in Meat Land.||File:Leap Day Silly Sausage Run.png|
|Buzz||A bee-like creature with a yellow body and purple appendages.||File:Leap Day Buzz Run.png|
|Roller Polar||A cameo of the Polar Bear from Roller Polar.||File:Leap Day Roller Polar Run.png|
|Hop Swap||The boy from Hop Swap.||File:Leap Day Hop Swap Run.png|
|Green Ninja||A cameo of the Green Ninja from Green Ninja.||File:Leap Day Green Ninja Run.png|
|Nibbler||A blue squirrel-like creature with a single large white eye.||File:Leap Day Nibbler Run.png|
|Stretch Dungeon||A cameo of the prisoner from Stretch Dungeon.||File:Leap Day Stretch Dungeon Run.png|
|8bit Doves||A cameo of the flying man from 8bit Doves.||File:Leap Day 8bit Doves Run.png|
File:Leap Day Icebreaker.png
|A cameo of a Viking from Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage.||File:Leap Day Icebreaker Run.png|
File:Leap Day Calamari.png
|A character with a blue head and green body. The blue head has a triangular tip and a frilled neck. The mouth is green.||File:Leap Day Calamari Run.png|
File:Leap Day Wick.png
|A candle-like character with white wax and an orange and yellow flame. The full character portrait shows Wick partially melting.||File:Leap Day Wick Run.png|
|Faucet||A grey character with a round head and a curved down nose. The nose constantly shows a blue droplet coming out. In the character portrait, it is shown as a larger stream of water. Faucet's head has a knob at the top.||File:Leap Day Faucet Run.png|
|Beneath The Lighthouse|
File:Leap Day Beneath The Lighthouse.png
|A cameo of the boy from Beneath The Lighthouse.||File:Leap Day Beneath The Lighthouse Run.png|
File:Leap Day Suplex.png
|A character presumably dressed in a light purple suit with yellow hands and a yellow mask. The character also sports a black and purple short rectangular nose.||File:Leap Day Suplex Run.png|
File:Leap Day Apple.png
|A character with a red apple for a head and a wood-like brown body. Apple also has a green rectangular nose.||File:Leap Day Apple Run.png|
|Puddle||A completely brown character with a single white eye and round head.||File:Leap Day Puddle Run.png|
File:Leap Day Magic Touch.png
|A cameo of the wizard from Magic Touch: Wizard for Hire.||File:Leap Day Magic Touch Run.png|
Some characters can be unlocked without purchasing them. This can be done by going to the info screen on the calendar menu, then tapping rapidly within the credits screen. This causes a text field to appear, allowing the player to type in one of the codes below to unlock the character:
- Lick: charsLick
- La Beef: charsLa Beef
- Kepi: charsKepi
- Meep: charsMeep
- Smooch: charsSmooch
- Solder_26: charsSolder_26
- Root: charsRoot
- Scalp: charsScalp
- Grill: charsGrill
- Zweiclops: charsZweiclops
- Logga: charsLogga
- Rasbunny: charsRasbunny
- Venus: charsVenus
- Croak: charsCroak
- Slab: charsSlab
- Whip: charsWhip
- Glug: charsGlug
- Flake: charsFlake
- Tuft: charsTuft
- Char: charsChar
- Turret: charsTurret
- Barley: charsBarley
- Mc Cloud: charsMcloud
- Victor: charsVictor
- Trunk: charsTrunk
- Tickles: charsTickle
- Jock: charsJock
- Shroom: charsShroom
- Bleep: charsBleep
- Felon: charsFelon
- Chuckles: charsChuckles
- Helm: charsHelm
- Nibbler: charsNibbler
- Buzz: charsBuzz
- Ram: charsRam
- The character La Beef is a pun on the name of American actor and director Shia LaBeouf.
- Solder_26 is a reference to the character Soldier: 76 from the video game Overwatch.
- In the May 19th, 2016 preview for Leap Day, which showed the in-game sprites for the characters that would be added in Update 1, four sprites differ slightly from their final versions: La Beef's head is closer to his body, Grill's skin is much lighter, Scalp's sprite has lighter skin, and the bottom part of Kepi's hat is green instead of grey.
- Zweiclops' name is a pun on Cyclops. "Zwei" means "Two" in German.
- Whip is a reference to the Bad Ice-Cream series.
- On November 19th, 2019, following a series of hints on the official Discord, Yolk was revealed for the Smash-like indie crossover fighting game Indie Pogo. He was released on, fittingly enough, Leap Day, 2020. His attacks are references to various other Nitrome games, most of them from the mobile era.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Nitrome on Twitter:
: birfdæ: Is the red a hat or a brain?
Nitrome: A red bobble hat., 5 July 16, retrieved 5 July 16.
- ↑ Nitrome on Twitter:
: Nags Tavon: Just unlocked a new character in Leap Day. Is this some reference to @PlayOverwatch 's Soldier: 76??
Nitrome: yes it is a little nod to that., 17 Jul 16, retrieved 21 Jul 16.