[[quoteright:270:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/snap_2482.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:270:The 1991-1996 adaptation by Movic and Creator/JCStaff]]
[[quoteright:225:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/72332.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:225:The 2015 adaptation by Creator/HiromuArakawa]]

''The Heroic Legend of Arslan'' (a.k.a. ''The Heroic Legend of Arislan'' a.k.a. ''Arslan Senki'') is a series of fantasy novels written by author Yoshiki Tanaka with illustration by Creator/YoshitakaAmano (Kadokawa) and Shinobu Tanno (Kobunsha) and published by Kadokawa Shoten then later Kobunsha.

The story of all incarnations is ''very loosely'' based on the Persian epic ''Amir Arsalan''. It takes place in a fantasy setting reminiscent of ancient Middle East and feature the warring states of Pars and Lusitania (Pars is roughly the same as Persia/modern Iran). The king of Pars--Andragoras--demotes one of his most loyal generals--Darun--on the word of a man who proves to be a traitor. During a battle between the Lusitanians and Parsians the Lusitanians achieve victory and Darun escapes with the crown prince of Pars--Arslan. The story details the ventures of Darun and Arslan as they attempt to reclaim Pars and gain revenge against the Lusitanians while facing innumerable obstacles between them and their goals.

The series was on hiatus at 13 volumes but two more volumes were published as of late and 16th is planned to be the last; the first having been published in 1986 and the series not yet complete, although volume 7 marks a sort of halfway conclusion.

A {{Manga}} adaptation of the novels was crafted by Chisato Nakamura and published by Kadokawa Shoten in the magazine Asuka Fantasy DX. Originally running between November 1991 and September 1996 the Manga also stands at 13 volumes.

An {{Anime}} {{OVA}} adaptation was also created, animated by studios Movic and Creator/JCStaff[[note]]With cooperation from Creator/ProductionIG, {{Madhouse}}, Creator/StudioTakuranke and Creator/StudioMark[[/note]] under the direction of Mamoru Hamatsu (episodes: I & II and V & VI) Tetsurō Amino (episodes: III & IV). Released August 17th 1991 to 1996 the Anime OVA consists of six episodes and is notable for its beautiful animation for its age (at least the in first two episodes), its music, its voice acting talent, and for being unfinished due to funding issues.

There's also an AudioAdaptation series (10 volumes plus a special one) that roughly covers the first 10 volumes of the novel and shares the anime voice cast (mostly), and a StrategyRPG for the UsefulNotes/SegaCD produced by Creator/{{Sega}} at the same time as the anime.

A new {{Manga}} adaptation of the novels was created by Creator/HiromuArakawa of ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' fame in 2013. Said adaptation has received a TV anime, airing in [[Spring2015Anime Spring 2015]].

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!!Tropes:

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[[folder: A-M]]
* AccidentalHandHold: In the Arakawa manga/TV anime only: Arslan and Etoile notice they are holding hands after Arslan saves Etoile from falling off a giraffe, Etoile pushes Arslan's hand off him that's strong enough to push Arslan down, making Etoile [[{{Tsundere}} angry and tells Arslan not to touch him.]] This entire story doesn't happen in the novel or the first anime.
* ActionGirl: [[spoiler: Etoile/Ester]], sometimes Arfrid.
* AdaptationDistillation: The themes and cultural trappings exhibited in adaptations of ''Arslan Senki'' (both the OVA and the 2015 TV anime) borrow less from the original Persian epic ''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amir_Arsalan Amir Arsalan]] (امیر ارسلان نامدار)'' and more from the longer epic poem by Firdusi, the ''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shahnameh Shahnameh]] (شاهنامه‎ , "The Book of Kings")''. One of the main characters of ''Shahnameh'', Kai Khosrow (کیخسرو), was acknowledged InUniverse to be the founder of Pars. His story arc of losing his kingdom and then rightfully regaining it is also basically Arslan's current plotline. Many supporting and side characters borrow their names from some characters inside ''Shanameh'' (such as Gieve, Farangis and Queen Tahamine) with varying similarity from the originals.
* AdaptationPersonalityChange: The Xandes in the anime and the manga have a few differences. Manga!Xandes has more personality, such as being dejected and awkward when he accidentally [[spoiler: called Silvermask "Your Highness"]] and showing intelligence of how to best deploy his men.
* AdultsAreUseless: Entirely averted. Arslan would be dead dozens of times over if not for the competent adults who care for him.
* AllLoveIsUnrequited: Gieve fell head over heels for Farangis who consistently brushed off his advances. Arfid has a one-sided crush on Narsus since he helped save her life. King Innocentius is doing everything he can, including ignoring his subjects' advice, to marry Queen Tahamine who refuses to speak to him.
* AllYourBaseAreBelongToUs: Lustania captured and claimed the capital city of Pars.
* ArcWords: ''"And thus, the boy would become king"'' — also serving as an OnTheNextEpisodeOfCatchphrase.
* ArmorPiercingQuestion: After Hodir attempted to slander and get Arslan to abandon Daryun, Narsus and the others because they were [[{{Hypocrite}} "going to use Arslan to further their own ends"]], Arslan's response was:
-->'''Arslan:''' If I were to discard Daryun and Narsus and choose you instead, how can you guarantee there shall not come a day when I will be forced to discard you in turn?
* ArrowsOnFire: Used to light a deep trench spanning an entire plain covered in oil--which served as the opening of the Battle of Atropatene where [[spoiler: a bulk of the Parsian army were killed in the flames]].
* AsskickingEqualsAuthority: Subverted. While Arslan is a decent fighter, those in his group like Daryun, Farangis and Gieve are better fighters.
* AttractiveBentGender: Elam while disguised as a girl got flirted on by a soldier.
* BackToBackBadasses: The second 2015 anime opening displays two instances of this: Arfrid with Narsus and Arslan with Elam.
* BadAssArmy: The Parsian army, especially their cavalry. There is a good reason why they were well known and widely feared. Even when they were badly injured, abandoned by the main armies and know they cannot win, [[DoNotGoGentle they continued to charge at their enemies]].
* BatmanGambit: Daryun pulled one on ''Narsus'' early on. He deliberately took the road near Kharlan's base so the soldiers searching for him and Arslan would investigate Narsus's house and Narsus would have no choice but to help Arslan.
* BattleCry: In various moments, Parsian commanders (particularly King Andragoras, Daryun and finally Arslan himself) have employed the fittingly-laconic ''Yasashuiin!''
* TheBeastmaster: Jaswant, apparently. He travels around on a tiger.
* BeastOfBattle: Shindrans use elephants in battle.
* BecauseYouWereNiceToMe: The Shindran agent Jaswant (who is loyal to Grand Vizier Mahendra, serving Crown Prince Gadevi) was sent to infiltrate Prince Rajendra's ranks and sabotage his alliance with Arslan. Being exposed to the [[GenreSavvy strategic excellence]] of Pars's leadership (particularly Narsus) cemented his respect for them, but still remained loyal to Mahendra. Arslan's mercy towards him after being outed as TheMole, however, led him to save Arslan's entourage (when the sacred duel between Gadevi and Rajendra's proxies went downhill). [[VillainousBreakdown Gadevi losing it]] and [[BadBoss killing Mahendra]] was just the icing on the cake.
* BetterToDieThanBeKilled: Kharlan.
* BerserkButton: Daryun doesn't like it when anyone disrespects his uncle Vahriz, especially after his death. He also really doesn't like it when anyone tries to do harm towards his charge, Arslan.
* BewareTheNiceOnes: Arslan is normally gentle, soft-spoken, patient and doesn't like violence. However, when Rajendra cynically puts Daryun's life in danger, he snaps, draws his sword and tells Rajendra that if Daryun doesn't survive the fight, he, Arslan, will personally have Rajendra's head. This comes as a surprise not only to Rajendra but also to Arslan's own followers.
** In the novel he says "I swear by the gods of Pars that if that monster kills Daryun its head will decorate the city gate - along with yours!" The novel also informs us that this was the first time Arslan ever threatened anyone.
* {{Bishounen}}: Every single male under 30, especially Arslan.
* BloodFromTheMouth: [[spoiler: Hermes and Daryun]] suffer this at the end of the duel in episode 24. The former also suffers a BrokenFaceplate simultaneous to it, despite their slashes explicitly only hitting each other at the torso.
* BoomHeadshot: Of the arrow variation. Gieve does this as a MercyKill to Shapur.
* BunnyEarsLawyer: Narsus is a formidable strategist and statesman (think [[Anime/LegendOfGalacticHeroes Oberstein]]) who nevertheless regards himself an artist first and foremost. In the second part of the story he says he's a "Royal Court Artist who happens to be First Minister as well." Daryun's utter and vocal distaste for Narsus's artwork is a running gag throughout the story, but while the first anime adaptation would have the viewers believe that Daryun is too boneheaded to appreciate true art, the novel series and the Arakawa adaptation imply that Narsus's art does actually suck.
* CainAndAbel: Gadevi and Rajendra, the two Shindran princes. Also Hirmes and Arslan, although they're cousins. [[spoiler:As it turns out, not even that.]]
* TheChainsOfCommanding: Farangis makes a well-crafted observation about kingship in the Season 1 finale:
--> ''"The throne itself does not have a will of its own. This is how I think of it. Depending upon who sits in it, it can be a seat of justice or it can be the seat of inhuman cruelty. As long as it is a man, and not a god, doing the governing, he can never be perfect. But should he neglect to make efforts to reach for perfection, a king will surely tumble down the slippery slope towards evil with no one around to stop him."''
* TheChampion: Daryun to Arslan. At one point he makes it clear that he doesn't care whether or not Arslan is the rightful heir or even of royal blood, he's loyal to him as a person.
* ChekhovsGun: Near the start of the duel between Daryun and Bahadur, Daryun's long cape is burnt at the end by the fire surrounding the ring. [[spoiler: He later deliberately catches a good portion of the cape on fire to hurl it into Bahadur's face, blinding him.]]
* ChekhovsGunman: Arakawa manga/anime only: back in chapter/episode 1, Daryun makes a mention of his friend as someone he would like Arslan to promote. Said character Narsus doesn't appear until a few chapters later (and chronologically three years later).
* CivilWar / SuccessionCrisis: The [[TheRemnant straggler Parsian officers in exile]] are beginning to sense that 1) with Arslan finally making his bid to free Pars from Lusitania and 2) Prince Hermes/Silvermask finally setting his plan to undermine Lusitania from within in motion, liberating Pars will not actually lead to peace but this, which bodes ill for the people of Pars. Former Marzban [[BloodKnight Kubard]], despite remaining a loyal Parsian subject, [[TheDitherer seems to find the possibility distasteful, and sits out of it]]—at least until a contingent sent by Hermes tried to kill him, which pretty much drove him to side with Arslan's army.
* CombatByChampion / DuelToTheDeath: Shindra's King Karikala issued one where his two sons would settle their dispute for the throne. However, a proxy for the duel is allowed and Rajendra chose Daryun and Gadevi chose Bahadur.
* CombatPragmatist: Daryun. Which goes to show that even KnightsInShiningArmor need not avoid it.
* ComingOfAgeStory: For Arslan, at any rate.
* CommonalityConnection: Arslan felt a connection with Jaswant as both respect and want to please [[spoiler: their adoptive parents]] and are uncertain with their place in the world.
* CoolAndUnusualPunishment: After Karikala passed away, Rajendra hosted a banquet in honor for his disgraced brother Gadevi. Narsus commented that in Shindra, in light of a royal execution, they would ply the condemned with food and wine as a final feast. Gadevi, who knew this tradition, is naturally frightened and jumpy.
* CoolHelmet: Arslan's helmet has large horns in the original artwork and the first anime. The 2015 Arakawa anime chose to give him, Daryun, King Andragoras and the other Parsian officers helmets with either leonine or equestrian motifs, which would not be out of place amongst the [[Film/TheLordOfTheRings Rohirrim]].
* CoolMask: Hirmes/Silvermask's mask has large bull horns (one wonders how strong his neck must be). The mask is toned down in Arakawa's adaptation, which looks like an amalgam of a mask a CharClone would wear (as befits Silvermask's status as TheAce and TheRival) and that of [[Manga/FlameOfRecca Kurei's initial mask]] (intending to hide facial burns, as befits [[CainAndAbel being the "Cain" to Arslan's "Abel"]]).
* CrucifiedHeroShot: In the Arakawa manga/TV series [[spoiler: Andragonas]] is forced into this position after being captured and chained up by [[spoiler: Hermes, his nephew]].
* DarkerAndEdgier: Arakawa's version compared to the previous anime and manga adaptations ([[TruerToTheText not the novel, though]]).
* DarkIsNotEvil: [[{{Deuteragonist}} Daryun]] dresses in all black, and in the novel he's known in-universe as the Black Knight.
* DecoyGetaway: How Queen Tahamine tried to escape from Ecbatana. (It didn't work.)
* DefectorFromDecadence: In a story quite morally-ambiguous as this, the defection of men such as [[spoiler: Kharlan, Xandes and Sam]] to serving Lusitania under Silvermask's command is treated as such. Their justification is that [[spoiler: Silvermask is Hermes, the original heir to the throne of King Osroes V (up until his brother Andragoras III seized kingship after killing him). To them, their aiding Lusitania to destroy Andragoras's rule is less being TheQuisling and more engineering RightfulKingReturns. Of course, [[GambitPileup Arslan and his faction has other ideas]].]]
** Jaswant's departure from the Shindran court to serve under Arslan himself can also qualify as such, considering Gadevi's and Rajendra's appalling track record on keeping their word--at least as long as Pars and Shindra are not at war.
* DistressedDude: Arslan occasionally finds himself in trouble and needs someone, usually Daryun, to come to the rescue. Justified in that he is young and inexperienced and while he can hold his own in a fight, he is frequently targeted because he is [[LivingMacGuffin the prince with a price on his head]].
* TheDreaded: The mere mention of Daryun is enough to send soldiers quivering and running away in fear.
* TheDrifter: Gieve. A WanderingMinstrel with a GrayAndGreyMorality who hates nobility and initially only joins Arslan's group because of Farangis and his own hatred against Lusitanians.
* DrivenToSuicide: The Lusitanian women and [[spoiler: Barcacion]] commit suicide as a sign of their faith when they see that the fortress of Saint Emmanuel was overrun by the Parsian soldiers.
* DualWielding: Kishward uses two swords.
* DudeLooksLikeALady: Arslan has a rather effeminate face in Creator/HiromuArakawa's rendition of the story.
* EasilyForgiven: Played with. Arslan forgave Jaswant and Rajendra after several betrayals from both and spared their lives repeatedly. Jaswant would return the favour and would later [[spoiler: join Arslan's group]]. For Rajendra, however, certain restrictions after the latest betrayal were put in place.
* EekAMouse: Played straight with Rajendra's [[BeastOfBattle battle elephants]].
* EtTuBrute: Kharlan's betrayal stunned his comrades and when confronting him, Arslan asked why he as an honoured knight of Pars would choose to betray his own country. [[spoiler: Kharlan would die refusing to explain his actions, though it was implied he did so because he found out Andragoras attempted to murder his nephew sixteen years ago and Hermes had returned to reclaim the throne.]]
** Later in the series, one of the Marzban waylaid by Kharlan's betrayal, [[spoiler: Sam, already having done his own FaceHeelTurn out of respect to Hermes]], exposes himself publicly in order to destabilize the morale of Arslan's army. Arslan's army holds nevertheless--sincee he holds more of the remaining Marzban in his ranks, and all of them profess UndyingLoyalty to him right now.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: The high-ranking Lusitanian officer Montferrat is seen disgusted by Bodin's extreme murders of innocent Parsians and disapproves of senseless killing. Other Lusitanian soldiers also voice their objection about Bodin's torture of Shapur.
* EyeScream: Azrael's main method of attacking anyone who means harm to Arslan. Gadevi experiences this when he tries to kill Arslan.
* {{Expy}}: The Lusitanian commander Guiscard, being a relatively more martial and competent commander than his brother (King Innocentius VII), coupled with his revealed desire to depose his brother and become King himself, is textbook ''Theatre/RichardIII''. His being a more ruthless commander with a very pragmatic (sometimes even disdainful) approach to the political uses of his faith also makes him similar to [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cesare_Borgia Cesare Borgia]], the man who inspired Creator/NiccoloMachiavelli's ''Literature/ThePrince''.
* FamousLastWords:
** "I'd rather die on the arrow of a friend than be made sport of by these Lusitanian barbarians!" [[spoiler:-- Shapur]]
** "I can't follow your orders." [[spoiler:-- Kharlan]]
** "Please become a fine king." [[spoiler:-- Bahman]]
** "Jaswant...don't choose the wrong path." [[spoiler:-- Mahendra]]
** "O kindhearted heathen prince... be that as it may, it[[note]]that is to say, [[BetterToDieThanBeKilled the suicide of the faithful of Yaldabord after Lusitania was defeated]] in the Keep of Saint Emmanuel[[/note]] is something that cannot be stopped. Such is the nature of faith. What is within my power to do is to be with everyone and to be with God." [[spoiler:-- Count Barcacion]]
* FantasyCounterpartCulture:
** Pars is Persia (especially under the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Achaemenid_Empire Achaemenid Empire]], further supported by the [[http://img.amiami.jp/images/product/main/152//GOODS-00030405.jpg emblem of Pars]] looking very similar to a relief of the Achaemenid king [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darius_I Darius I]], who ruled it at its peak), Lusitania is a mix of Macedonia and the Kingdom of Jerusalem, Maryam is the Byzantine Empire, and Shindra is India.
** As for religion, Pars and Shindra are polytheist while Lusitania and Maryam worship one god, Yaldabord. Lusitania is a lot more militant about it: they torture "heathens" and destroy art and scriptures that depict and mention other gods. To drive the point home, the current king of Lusitania is called Innocentius VII, [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything an obvious reference to Pope Innocent III.]] Lusitania, for all intents and purposes, is pretty much a mishmash of most stereotypes regarding medieval Catholicism.
* FatalFlaw: King Andragoras's overconfidence. He believed that his powerful army could overcome any enemy with little regard for tactics or planning, despite warnings from one of his generals. That pride would cost him the battle of Atropatene where he not only lost a huge portion of his soldiers, the rest of his followers scattered, the capital city becoming overrun and [[spoiler: he himself would be imprisoned.]]
* AFatherToHisMen: A budding one despite his youth, but Arslan cares deeply for his friends and the men who fight for him. This drives him to work hard to become a leader worthy of their respect.
* FieryRedhead: Arfrid
* FiveManBand: Prince Arslan's little group.
** TheHero: Arslan
** TheLancer: Darun
** TheSmartGuy: the role is divided between Narsus, TheStrategist and Gieve the WanderingMinstrel. After Gieve is PutOnABus, Kishward, being the most senior commander next to Daryun and Narsus, takes his place.
** TheBigGuy: early in the story it's Darun, due to him being the tallest and strongest. Near the end of the battle of Saint Emmanuel, Kubard joins the team and takes up this role.
** TheChick: Farangis, mostly by default since she's a LadyOfWar.
** TagalongKid: Elam and Arfrid. The latter is a more straight example as she actually decides to tag along, but she goes back and forth between this trope and TheChick.
** TheSixthRanger: [[spoiler: Jaswant,]] who joins our heroes shortly after [[spoiler: helping them foil Rajendra's schemes of betrayal.]]
** EleventhHourRanger: Most of the Parsian generals who heeded Arslan's call (such as Lord Lucian and the trio of Zaravant, Esfan and Tus) count as this.
* ForegoneConclusion: Arslan becomes king. His journey to the throne, however, is [[TheEpic an epic]] worthy to be told.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: Early on, Daryun's uncle Vahriz asked Daryun to [[ExactWords swear loyalty to Arslan]], not the royal family. It's later revealed that he knew or at least suspected [[spoiler: Hermes was alive, seeking to claim the throne, and Arslan isn't of royal blood.]]
* FramingDevice: The anime is narrated by someone, most likely a historian, noting important dates in the history of Arslan's attempts to retake his kingdom.
* FriendToAllLivingThings: Hawks Azrael and Surush are very fond of Arslan, as well as horses and a giraffe. Kishward lampshades this and comments how the hawks know the goodness of Arslan's heart.
* TheFundamentalist: Jon Bodan, High Priest of Lusitania.
* GeneralRipper: Just to highlight the show's GreyAndGrayMorality, it shows that despite Lusitania having a bunch of fundamentalist nutjobs among its officers, it also shows that even the Marzban of Pars have elitist and WeHaveReserves tendencies. One tragic example is the hot-headed Garshaph, who killed slaves planning on bringing in Lusitania after the latter promised freeing them. His high-handedness eventually drove more slaves to revolt against Pars--and when Ecbatana fell, [[AssholeVictim we get a good lingering shot of him becoming a]] HumanPincushion [[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill after Lusitanian soldiers were done with him]].
* GloryHound: Zaravant and Esfan were this immediately after joining Arslan, and undertaking a foolhardy attack gets their armies suckered into an enemy trap (taking Tus and his men down with them). Fortunately, Arslan and Narsus were able to devise a strategy to rescue them immediately. Thankfully, Zaravant and Esfan learn their lesson and never stray from their orders hereon.
* GoodScarsEvilScars: Hirmes's mask hides a rather nasty burn scar.
* GoodIsNotSoft: Don't mistaken Arslan's AllLovingHero status as weak.
* HappilyAdopted:
** Averted with [[spoiler: Arslan]] who adores their parents but said parents don't reciprocate.
** Played straight with Jaswant and the Shindran Grand Vizier.
* HelmetsAreHardlyHeroic: Played with. Arslan and Daryun would wear helmets during battle/combat and it has saved their lives a few times. Others like Narsus, Gieve or Farangis don't.
* HeroicBastard: Arslan. Only alluded to in the anime, expanded upon in the novels and the manga. [[spoiler:In fact, he's not even of royal blood, he's the son of a cavalry soldier and a serving girl, whom he thought to be his nanny.]] He quickly proves that he is charismatic, kind, and intelligent enough to deserve his followers' loyalty and grow up into a great ruler regardless.
* HeroicBSOD: Arslan goes into numbed shock in the 2015 anime/manga when he witnesses firsthand the bloody destruction and carnage of the Battle of Atropatene, weakly calling out for a familiar face. It gets FromBadToWorse when he sees [[spoiler: Kharlan and his men]] arriving, only for him to realize they are going to kill him.
* HitchhikerHeroes: Arslan and his supporters who wander around Pars looking for supporters and allies. It starts out with only Darun, then gains Narsus (and Elam), Farangis and Gieve who make up the core of Arslan's growing group of allies. Originally none of them were very enthusiastic about it and supported Arslan only because they opposed the Lusitanian invasion, but eventually Arslan's personality won them over.
** At first Darun was only following his uncle Vahriz's orders, Narsus joined because he found Arslan interesting, Farangis because she hated Lustianian religious fanaticism and Gieve because Farangis joined, and because he hated oppression of all kind.
* HopelessSuitor: Gieve to Farangis, Arfrid to Narsus. Subverted a little in that both Farangis and Narsus are very much aware of their respective suitors' feelings, and they find the situation annoying.
* IDieFree: Early in the Arakawa manga, Etoile's fellow captured Lusitanian friends went berserk and fought to the death against their captors rather than become slaves.
* IceQueen: Arslan's mother Queen Tahamine is very cold towards her husband, who dotes on her, and her son, who only wants to make her proud.
* InfantImmortality: Averted as one panel Bodin tosses a young child into the fire and later on, a Lusitanian soldier mentions that three million heretics, including children, have been killed.
* InterServiceRivalry: The Lusitanian military and the clergymen/Temple Knights do not get along, since the military does all the fighting but the clergymen take all the credit while not being on the front lines. The rivalry is fueled by the mutual dislike between their leaders, Lord Guiscarl and Archbishop Bodin.
* KickTheDog: Bodin strikes one Lusitanian soldier who openly questions the burning of the historical books and scrolls of Pars and hits him hard enough to push him into the bonfire.
* KickedUpstairs: Farangis is assigned the noble task of guarding Arslan, so that her fellow sisters at the convent who were jealous of her could find a convenient excuse to kick her out.
* KingBobTheNth: Innocentius VII. Before him, side materials indicate Andragoras's regnal number as "III", while his brother Osroes is "V".
* KneelBeforeZod: In the TV series, Silvermask and his men surrounded Narsus and would let Narsus live if he kneel before him and serve him.
* LadyLooksLikeADude: Invoked by [[spoiler: Etoile]], who [[WholesomeCrossdresser dresses as a boy]] so she can fight in the army.
* LadyOfWar: Farangis is this trope personified. Incidentally, she's very much aware of her own skills and beauty. She can also drink her HopelessSuitor Gieve under the table without losing her poise and dignity.
* LadykillerInLove: Gieve, the smooth talker, falls head over heels for Farangis the moment he meets her.
* TheLastDJ: The series has some instances where the idea actually becomes a plot point:
** Narsus had this reputation at Andragoras's court, being the first (and so far, ''only'') Parsian noble to [[SlaveryIsASpecialKindOfEvil free all his slaves]]--[[ValuesDissonance whose labor serves as the economic backbone of Pars]]. Thus, he is a source of unease to the traditional Parsian nobles who flocked to Arslan's standard. Hence, despite having served for almost the entire season as Arslan's ''de facto'' chancellor, he eventually chose to hand over the position of First Chancellor (for now) to the newcomer-but-most senior Lord Lucian. ([[ExactWords After all, his]] [[AlmightyJanitor "official commission" from Arslan is "Court Painter"]].)
** This is also arguably the cause of [[spoiler: [[PutOnaBus Gieve's "exile"]]]] With Arslan's army slowly becoming more "formalized" and staffed with the traditional Parsian nobility, the [[RagtagBunchOfMisfits loose nature of his in-exile inner circle]], despite having proven themselves as TrueCompanions, needed to be integrated in this formal command.[[note]]As is, Daryun's position as general is a given; Narsus remains an in-house strategist, just not the most prominent (with Elam and Arfrid, despite her being from a bandit clan, functioning as his lieutenants), Farangis's position as a priestess of Mithra grants his army religious legitimacy, and Jaswant, being a representative of the Shindran alliance, gives him diplomatic immunity.[[/note]] Gieve, as it is, is too much of a loose cannon which does not fit into the chain of command. [[spoiler: Of course, it eventually appeared that Gieve was sent on a secret mission to secure "something" which will legitimize Arslan's claim to a throne--which is virtually intelligence work.]]
* LaughingMad: Since being captured, [[spoiler: Andragoras]] has a habit of doing this.
* LivingMacGuffin: Arslan is targeted due to the price on his head and his status as the prince of Pars.
* LongHairedPrettyBoy: Narsus, Gieve
* LoveAtFirstSight: Men have a way of falling for [[SoBeautifulItsACurse Queen Tahamine]] at first sight. It happened with Andragoras, Osroes and Innocentius, and at least one other man before she married Andragoras.
* MagneticHero: One of Arslan's main traits is his compassion and empathy, able to win over even the most unlikely people to his side. Even his enemies treat him with respect and courtesy. The Arakawa manga and the 2015 anime emphasize these traits to the detriment to his other traits such as his natural insight and being a very good judge of character which are his prevalent in the original story.
* TheMagnificent: It is claimed that [[TheGoodKing Arslan]] is about to gain the historical epithet ''Arslan the Liberator'': after re-establishing his power base and command, he finally set forth public declarations for his bid to 1) recapturing Ecbatana, driving away Lusitania and freeing Pars, as well as 2) making good on his claim in finally setting the slaves of Pars free.
* MaybeMagicMaybeMundane: In episode 24 of the 2015 anime, arrows strangely miss Farangis despite her standing out in the open. Whether it's her claim that the Djinn were protecting her or just good luck, it's left ambiguous.
* MercyKill: Shapur, captured and facing ColdBloodedTorture, asks to be shot by his allies. However, none of the Parsian soldiers are capable of covering such a distance. He is shot instead by [[EstablishingCharacterMoment a soon-to-be introduced new character, Gieve.]]
* TheMole: Jaswant is sent by Grand Vizier Mahendra to infiltrate Rajendra's forces.
* MoodWhiplash: Arslan and Daryun finally hear of Vahriz's death. Narsus then chucks a plate at a soldier attempting to escape Narsus's pit and Elam quickly scolds him for wasting dishware.
* MoralMyopia: Etoile tells Arslan that his god Yaldabord teaches that all people are equal but if you identify with another religion, then you are a pagan and must be marked off and killed. Arslan naturally lampshades this.
** [[spoiler: She also fails to see the hypocrisy of her doctrine when the army doesn't want women in their ranks and has to disguise herself as a man to even join.]]
* MoralityPet: Arguably, Arslan for Etoile and Gieve. He is the only Parsian that Etoile respects and he is able to bring out a softer side of the latter. Gieve initially only cared for himself but Arslan's compassion wins him over and Gieve eventually would proceed to do unselfish acts for Arslan's sake.
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[[folder: N-Y]]
* {{Ninja}}: Oddly, Tus's design in the 2015 Arakawa adaptation gives him a mesh undershirt, a forehead protector and kunai amongst his kit--making him look like more an exile from the {{Manga/Naruto}} universe than anything.
* NoEscapeButDown: In chapter 26 where Arslan, Gieve and Elam were trapped between a cliff and the pursuing Lusitanian soldiers. Gieve grabbed the two and jumped down, causing the soldiers to believe that NoOneCouldSurviveThat. Subverted in that they actually didn't jump off the cliff but held onto the edge to deceive the soldiers.
* NoOneGetsLeftBehind: Arslan refuses to leave Elam whose horse was shot when surrounded by Lusitatian soldiers. The fact that Arslan risks his life for not an important subordinate but for a servant cements Gieve's respect for Arslan.
** Arslan also takes this option when Zaravant, Esfan and Tus were entrapped (as mentioned above). This subsequently cements the three's absolute respect for his orders.
* OffWithHisHead: Happens to Daryun's uncle Vahriz and other Marzban whose heads are on display, used as an intimidation tactic against the garrison of Pars's capital.[[note]]Such a tactic is not unheard of in pre-modern warfare, having been utilized both by the Mongols and Japanese warlords, notably UsefulNotes/TakedaShingen [[/note]] Considering Ecbatana is sieged on all sides at this point, it unsurprisingly works. It was also done to Gadevi after he attempts to kill Arslan.
* OneManArmy: Daryun
* PetTheDog:
** Hirmes's romance with Princess Irina.
** He is also willing to compensate Kharlan's family after the latter's death.
* TheQueensLatin: The first four episodes of the OVA were dubbed by Manga Entertainment's UK branch. The voice actors didn't fake American accents like in other Manga UK dubs.
* RedBaron: Daryun is called ''Sher Senani'' (Great Tiger General) by the awestruck Shindran soldiers at the end of the duel before the gods. Even prior to this, he also enjoyed the title of ''Mardān fu Mardān'' even amongst the Marzban of Pars.
* RescueRomance:
** Subverted. Gieve, finding Farangis surrounded by assailants, ''intends'' to sweep in, rescue her, and bask in her gratitude... but by the time he reaches her, she's handled the situation herself, leaving ''him'' stunned with admiration.
** Played more straight in Arfrid's introduction scene, though also with a twist. She's trying to avenge his father on Hirmes but he easily disarms her. When Narsus shows up, she demands he give her his sword so she can continue fighting. Narsus rescues her instead, and eventually she decides she's in love with him.
* TheReveal: Silvermask does this to Andragoras [[spoiler: revealing to him that he is Hermes, his nephew, and by extension, Arslan's cousin.]]
** [[spoiler: It's much later revealed that Arslan isn't related to Andragoras and Tahamine at all. In reality, he was instead adopted into their family; so he has no blood relation to the royal family, or Hermes.]]
* ReusedCharacterDesign: In Hiromu Arakawa's manga, the characters bear strong resemblances to characters of her other work ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist''; Arslan looks like Edward with Alphonse's expressions and white hair, Daryun resembles Kimblee, Etoile has Alphonse's appearance and Edward's expressions and his personality and [[spoiler:after the time skip, she looks more like Hawkeye]], Farangis' looks and demeanor resembles Lust and her facial structure resembles Lan Fan, etc.
* RevengeByProxy: Silvermask wants to torture and kill Arslan so Andragoras would see his son's severed head because [[spoiler: Andragoras is actually Silvermask/Hermes' uncle, who killed Hermes' father and tried to assassinate Hermes sixteen years ago.]]
* RewardedAsATraitorDeserves: A major factor for the Lusitanian victory during the siege of Ectabana was that they were able to persuade the slaves to turn against their masters and let them inside the castle walls with the promise of freeing them. But once the deed was done, the Lusitanian soldiers had no intent to keep their promise and the slaves were treated even ''worse'' than their previous masters.
* RightInFrontOfMe: In episode 9, Etoile told the "spoiled rich boy" he reunited with from three years ago that he heard King Andragoras and Prince Arslan have two twisted horns, abnormally wide mouths and black tails. Said rich boy looked nervous/appalled because ''he'' is Arslan.
* RightfulKingReturns: Once again, [[{{Deconstruction}} played more realistically than most]]. What happens when there are ''two'' arguably-rightful claimants to the throne? [[spoiler: As it is, Arslan and Hermes are on a race to make the stronger claim to their "righteousness", set in the backdrop of liberating Pars from the Lusitanian foreign invasion.]]
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Parsian royalty is expected to be war heroes. The King serves as the main commander and is on the front lines, while the prince is expected to go to battle at a young age. Prince Arslan had his first campaign at age 14 and basically, he is trying to reclaim his throne at age 14.
** Andragoras III, every inch '''''the''''' [[WarriorPrince Warrior King]], himself supposedly was performing feats of arms and enjoyed a MemeticBadass reputation amongst his subjects even as a young boy.
** Similarly, his [[spoiler: nephew Hermes/Silvermask]] has not spent his years of exile idly, having prepared for years to retake the throne of Pars through any scheme and means necessary. Interestingly, he was actually shown as doing a better job in his studies as a Crown Prince in his youth than Arslan was at the same age.
* ShirtlessScene: Gieve in episode 2, though technically he's full naked (as he's swimming in a pool).
* SkewedPriorities:
** A mild one when Hodir gave Arslan two conditions to gain his support (marry his daughter and refrain from any revolutionary reforms such as abolishing slavery), Arslan was more upset that he hasn't even met Hodir's daughter yet.
** Narsus is more indignant that Silvermask called him a "third rate painter" than the fact Silvermask escaped.
* SleevesAreForWimps: In many scenes, Daryun gets to show off his [[FanService well-toned arms]].
* SoftWater: In the Arakawa manga/TV anime: Arslan and Etoile fell from the castle wall into the moat. Both were perfectly fine and Etoile managed to steal a horse afterwards.
* SpeakIllOfTheDead: Silvermask is fond of doing this. And some of Kharlan's men mocked Vahriz after his death.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: And ''how''. To start with, originally the names of characters and places either came from Persian legends (Arslan, Farangis, Giv, etc.) or are native to various languages like Farsi, Hindi, Urdu (Daryun, Elam, Etwar, etc. Many places mentioned in the story, such as Ecbatana or Atropatene, actually exist or existed in real life). The person who translated the anime to English treated the names as if they were random fantasy names, hence Arislan, Pharangese, Daryoon, Gieve and so on. The most jarring decision was turning Etwar/Ester into Etoile/Estelle, despite the very obvious ancient Middle-Eastern type setting. And ''then'' for the last two episodes of the OVA ExecutiveMeddling happened on the Japanese side, and the spelling and pronunciation of the names were changed for all major characters, turning Arislan, Daryoon, Narsus, Pharangese, and Gieve into Arslan, Darun, Narcasse, Farangis, and Guibu.
* SpoilerOpening: The 2nd Opening of the 2015 anime spoils the fact that [[spoiler: Jaswant]] joins the party.
* SpoiledSweet: Mostly in the Arakawa version, it comes as a surprise to many characters that Arslan is very kind and humble for someone who is the king's son. In the novels he's still kind, but not particularly sweet, and there's a lot more emphasis on his empathy, people skills and observant nature which are a large part of his charisma that draws people to him.
* SurroundedByIdiots: Guiscarl of Lusitania, who actually runs the kingdom in place of his utterly incompetent brother.
* TheStrategist: Narsus
* TallDarkAndHandsome: Darun
* TamperingWithFoodAndDrink: In chapter 28, Arslan tells Gieve and Elam that his nurse and her husband died of drinking too much nabeed (wine) when he was younger. However since they both died at the same time in a suspicious manner, Gieve quietly suspects that they were poisoned instead.
* TemptingFate: Early on, there had been many mentions how Pars' armies were undefeatable and that no country could hope to challenge them. Cue the Battle of Atropatene.
* TimeSkip: After Arslan's coronation the novel jumps four years ahead.
* ToThePain: Silvermask/[[spoiler:Hermes]] tells Arslan when he corners Arslan alone in episode 13 that he will cut off Arslan's right hand now. Then when they meet next time, he will take the left hand. And after that, if Arslan is still alive, he will take his right foot.
* UndyingLoyalty: Daryun to Arslan. And eventually, Arslan wins the respect and admiration of the rest of his followers. Farangis sums up best to [[spoiler: Ester]] why they all have been won over:
--> '''Farangis''': ''His Highness, the Crown Prince, [[{{Determinator}} is always making an effort]]. [[AsskickingEqualsAuthority It is merely that this fact is obvious to those who serve him]]. [[AFatherToHisMen It is because we see him as a man to be treasured]] that we are all happy to serve him.''
* UngratefulBastard: Both the Shindran princes have this to a certain extent:
** Gadevi, after having been feted by Rajendra before finally exiling him (albeit very likely to be killed en route) tries to assassinate Arslan [[DidntThinkThisThrough when he is in no position to do so]]. [[OffWithHisHead This gets his head axed]].
** Rajendra, despite owing his success and throne to Arslan's intervention, tries to backstab his army and take him hostage once again (although he justifies it within the context of 1) [[TheChainsOfCommanding making ruthless decisions to protect Shindra's security]] and 2) [[SternTeacher supposedly trying to teach Arslan the harsh choices between war and diplomacy]]). [[MagnificentBastard This would have worked]] [[SubvertedTrope if Narsus did not foresee it]], which ends with [[HoistByHisOwnPetard Rajendra forced to a non-aggression treaty after losing soldiers yet again]].
* UnknownRival: Zaravant apparently resents Jaswant's position of proximity to Arslan, and tried as much as he can to provoke and undermine him. Jaswant, being TheStoic and the better man, treats Zaravant with indifference. Their relationship eventually graduates to VitriolicBestBuds after saving each other on the battlefield.
* VillainRespect:
** Some Lusitanian soldiers openly admired the captured Shapur for being DefiantToTheEnd even if he was a "heretic" in their eyes.
** Silvermask has some admiration for Narsus and wanted Narsus to serve him.
* VillainousBreakdown: Gadevi goes through this when his proxy Bahadur lost the duel and consequently, he lost the throne to his younger brother. He furiously tried to attack his own father and ordered his men to attack Arslan's group as well. And later, he tried to assassinate Arslan when he was in no position to do so. This would eventually result in his own execution.
* VitriolicBestBuds: Darun and Narsus, especially when it comes to Narsus's artwork.
-->'''Darun:''' (''to a prisoner'') Start talking or I'll have [Narsus] paint your portrait. And nobody wants that.
* WanderingMinstrel: Gieve, though he's more of a wandering warrior and thief who also happens to be a bard.
* WellDoneSonGuy: Arslan wants to become a good king worthy of his father's expectations and works hard to please his parents who both act rather harsh and cold towards him.
* WhatYouAreInTheDark: When the group was separated and chased by Lusitanians, Gieve spotted Arslan and Elam being attacked. At that point in the manga, Gieve was NotInThisForYourRevolution and could have pretended he didn't see them. Instead, he chose to come to their rescue and repeatedly protected them throughout the rest of the journey.
* WholesomeCrossdresser:
** [[spoiler: Etoile/Ester]] dresses as a boy and goes by a male name so she can fight with the other knights.
** Elam disguised himself to sneak into the captured city of Ecbatana to get information.
* WoundedGazelleGambit: During the duel between Daryun and Bahadur, [[spoiler: Daryun pretended that his only weapon had broken and he was helpless against Bahadur. Once Bahadur let his guard down, Daryun revealed he had a hidden dagger on him the whole time and used it to kill Bahadur.]]
* WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes: Hirmes is deathly afraid of fire, as a result of having survived [[spoiler:Andragoras']] attempt to burn him alive.
* YouAreACreditToYourRace: Etoile thinks all Parsians are heathens that need to be killed off but [[spoiler: once she gets to know Arslan]], his kindness and desire to improve the kingdom makes Etoile acknowledge that Pars has at least one decent person.
* YouKilledMyFather:
** Subverted in that it's the ''villains'' who tend to do this. Hirmes when he reveals himself to [[spoiler:Andragoras]], while Zande, Kahran's son does the whole MyNameIsInigoMontoya YouKilledMyFather PrepareToDie routine with Darun. Arfrid, however, also has a moment of this with Hirmes after the latter kills her father.
** A variation where Shapur's younger brother Isfan initially wants Gieve dead, who had shot and killed his brother, though for [[MercyKill a good reason]].
* YoungFutureFamousPeople: Arslan is noted to become known as "Arslan the Liberator" in the 19th episode. In fact, it can be argued that Arslan's group will be this, as they make their mark in history.
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