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The D'niAn ancient civilization that once existed in the desert under New Mexico or the Middle East, the D'ni arrived on earth many thousands of years ago after their home world's sun began to die. They had mastered the art of traveling to other worlds, known as Ages, by writing about them in descriptive books. Destroyed by a deadly plague at the end of Book of Ti'ana, scattering the survivors to the wind.
- Arc Number: Five and multiples of five occur frequently in their culture.
- Defector from Decadence: Originally, their entire civilization, which broke away from the decadent corruption of the Ronay.
- Hidden Elf Village: The cavern. In Book of Ti'ana, the D'ni express doubt about the possibility of humanoid life existing on earth, despite their civilization having been here for many generations.
- Human Alien: Apart from their pale eyes and gaunt features, they're visually identical to humans.
- Long Lived: 400 years seems to be the average.
- Master Race: They see themselves as this, a bias which eventually leads to their demise.
- Mole Men: The other thing that defines them aside from the Art. They've been underground for long enough that their eyes have weakened, forcing them to wear goggles in bright sunlight.
- Proud Scholar Race Guy: And how! Even their menial laborers are Proud Scholar Race Guys!
- Shadow Archetype: While D'ni was far from flawless, Terahnee makes it look like a Utopia.
The StrangerThe Player Character who found Atrus' Linking book to Myst.
The D'ni man who regularly calls on the Stranger to help him with his family problems.
- Absent-Minded Professor
- Adorably Precocious Child: Unsurprisingly given his character in the games, he was like this as a child.
- Bound and Gagged: At the climax of Book of Atrus.
- Broken Pedestal: When he met his father as a child, he admired him at first.
- Dead Guy Junior: Named for his deceased grandfather.
- Distressed Dude: He needs you to solve his problems for him in every numbered Myst series title.
- Disappeared Dad: Gehn took off the night Atrus was born due to grief over his wife's death.
- Doom Magnet
- Gadgeteer Genius: His other skill set, aside from writing Ages. He's shown to be proficient with machines from childhood, and his inventions play a major role in most games.
- Game-Over Man: If you foolishly enter D'ni without the green page, leaving you both without any hope of exit. This actually causes Atrus to shout "What kind of fool are you?!" before turning away in disgust. (If you instead choose to free Sirrus and Achenar, they will gloat before trapping you in their respective books.)
- Good Is Not Soft: Atrus punishes both his sons and his father for their crimes with a Fate Worse Than Death.
- Happily Married: Despite the hardships they endure, he and Catherine are devoted to one another.
- Large Ham: In the original version of Myst, Atrus was much more animated and emotional, occasionally dipping into Chewing the Scenery. This is most evident if you go to D'ni but forget to take the page with you, causing him to angrily shout the above quote in such a way as to sound like any number of gibberish phrases. Inverted both in later games as well as Updated Rereleases of Myst, as he is much more stoic and reserved.
- Meaningful Name: He is named after his grandfather, Aitrus.
- Missing Mom: Died in childbirth.
- Properly Paranoid: At the beginning of Exile, Catherine complains about Atrus' obsession with security. As it shortly turns out, his efforts are both entirely justified and woefully inadequate. (He thinks someone's been breaking in, which is true, but what he doesn't know is that it's not someone in Tomahna, it's someone in a completely different Age who happens to have a Linking Book to Tomahna that gets them right past his locks.)
- Proud Scholar Race Guy
- Raised by Grandparents: Raised by his grandmother in the desert.
- Recurring Character: Atrus, played by series co-creator Rand Miller, is the only character to appear in every game. Even though Cyan did not make Myst III and IV themselves, Miller agreed to appear in the games for the fans — although it's been said that he wasn't fond of playing Atrus, as he thought the role was more deserving of a professional actor.
- Renaissance Man
- Set Right What Once Went Wrong: Non-time-travel variant; Gehn isn't a particularly good linking author, so the quantum-uncertainty thing the linking books have going on makes the Ages he links to dangerously unstable. Atrus is much better at writing linking books than his father, and reckons he can use those same quantum-uncertainty shenanigans to salvage Gehn's Ages, or even undo the damage Gehn caused; but it's a very time-sensitive endeavor because Ages don't stop deteriorating just because you're not in them, and some are beyond saving already. In fact, this is how Atrus contributes to your efforts to save Catherine and capture Gehn: The entire time you're in Riven, he's writing frenziedly in the book to patch any errors he can find and make sure that the Age doesn't fall apart and kill you.
- Tailor-Made Prison
- Uneven Hybrid: 1/4th D'ni.
- What the Hell, Player?: Atrus doesn't react well to your stupidity if you go to D'ni without bringing the missing linking book page.
- Nor does he react well to your cruelty if you trap Saavedro in Narayan and leave without letting him go.
The younger son of Atrus and Catherine.
- The Alcoholic: A couple of his rooms have bottles scattered around.
- Big Bad: Part of a Big Bad Duumvirate with his brother Achenar and the sole main antagonist in Myst IV: Revelations.
- Big NO: In Revelation.
- Cast as a Mask: Inverted and has some gender bending thrown in in Revelation.
- Determinator: Spire is an even worse place to live than Haven in terms of pure starkness, but Sirrus gets by. He even keeps going after spending years building a magnetic ship to fly to a place under the could cover, all in an attempt to recover the linking book that fell off the edge, only to find there is no world under the spires, just a charged ball of magnetic gas.
- Driven by Envy: While he never had the work ethic to learn the Art, he desperately wants its power. It's why his plan in IV boils down to stealing his sister's life from her to learn it from Atrus.
- Evil Gloating: In both the original game and IV. In IV, the player's seeing the shredded-up remains of him gloating on and on to Yeesha.
- Gadgeteer Genius: Every single machine on Spire was his own work.
- Killed Off for Real: His body is an Easter Egg you can find if you look at the metal tube once you enter his hideout. You see Sirrus sleeping in the tube. Even then, Sirrus isn't dead - only his mind is, as solving the memory lock he holds on Yeesha essentially destroys his soul, rendering Sirrus a vegetable forever.
- Large Ham
- Man of Wealth and Taste: Sirrus has a taste for nice things such as mahogany furniture and Renaissance art, in contrast to his more Axe-Crazy and Obviously Evil brother Achenar.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Inverted, his color code is Red but he is a scheming planner. Not that he never has bouts of emotion, he does.
- Smug Snake
- The Stoner: If Sirrus has a weakness, other than his general egotism and greed, it's an overt fondness for drugs- of any kind, apparently.
- Uneven Hybrid: 1/8th D'ni.
- His full ethnic (racial) breakdown: 1/2 Rivenese (with possible Earth origins if the Rivenese language is any indication), 1/4 Amad Indian (Earth native), 1/8 D'ni (Ronay), 1/8 unspecified European (Earth native).
- Villainous Breakdown: "No, you fool! My performance was perfect!"
- Walking Spoiler
- Would Hurt a Child: More specifically, attempts Grand Theft Me on Yeesha.
The older son of Atrus and Catherine.
- Axe-Crazy: It's pretty easy to recognize whenever you've found Achenar's room in an age due to all the torture implements and human remains lying around.
- Big Bad: Alongside his brother in the first game.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Has no problem torturing innocent people to death, for apparently no other reason other than he thinks it's fun. Even has a Torture Cellar in one age, fit with a collection of poisons and an electrical torture cage.
- Even Evil Has Standards: His death-fetishism aside, Achenar apparently found his brother's greedy obsession with squeezing their Ages dry repulsive, and gave his subjects orders to ignore Sirrus's new taxes.
- This also pushes Achenar to stop Sirrus from hijacking Yeesha's body for personal gain. Achenar is disgusted by how vile he is.
- Giggling Villain: Especially evident in the bad ending in the first game where the player is trapped inside his book after freeing him. It's even reminiscent of the laugh provided by Frank Gorshin's Riddler.
- Heel–Face Turn
- Heroic Sacrifice: He dies protecting Yeesha from his brother.
- Insane Equals Violent: At least, he seems to have no reservations about painfully killing people to satisfy his own morbid curiosities.
- Killed Off for Real
- Large Ham: In the original game, it's pretty clear from his dialogue alone that he's Obviously Evil. He does calm down quite a bit by Revelation.
- Morality Pet: The Mangrees and Yeesha.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Killing off the cerpatees, the top predators of Haven, upsets the ecological balance of the island. Seeing the consequences of his actions, and having to live with said consequences, gets him to start contemplating his actions from before, eventually leading to a Villainous B.S.O.D..
- Nightmare Fetishist: Has a pretty unhealthy fascination with anything having to do with death.
- Obviously Evil: From the moment he makes contact with you, it's blatantly obvious he's unhinged and unstable. His rooms in the various Ages are also filled with torture devices, and he has a closet filled with the mutilated bodies of his victims. This is in contrast to Sirrus, who behaves calmly and rationally and whose rooms show him to enjoy wealth, which doesn't seem so bad until you realize that his opulence stands in stark contrast to the sparse dwellings of the natives around him, and that wealth had to come from somewhere...
- Psychopathic Manchild: Plays it up even more by giggling like a child whenever he speaks.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Is coded blue, but is known for violent outbursts. He starts becoming rational after he realizes how far he has fallen.
- Redemption Equals Death
- Villainous Breakdown: Suffered one in Haven. After realising he was trapped on his own with no Linking Book, his already unstable mind underwent a complete psychotic meltdown, causing him to butcher his way through half the Age's animal inhabitants in blind rage. Ultimately subverted, as he eventually came to terms with his fate and realised with all the blood on his hands just why he deserved to be there. Eventually, this led to his redemption.
- Uneven Hybrid: 1/8th D'ni.
- His full ethnic (racial) breakdown: 1/2 Rivenese (with possible Earth origins if the Rivenese language is any indication), 1/4 Amad Indian (Earth native), 1/8 D'ni (Ronay), 1/8 unspecified European (Earth native).
- Villainous B.S.O.D.: "My god, brother. Did we really kill so many?"
Atrus' wife and a native of the Riven Age.
- Accidental Misnaming: On Atrus's part. Her birth name is Katran, but because Atrus is unfamiliar with the language, he mistakenly refers to her as Catherine. She eventually takes this on as her actual name.
- A God I Am Not: Played straight. She's initially uncomfortable with the godlike treatment she receives from the Moiety. While she never sees herself as a god, she does come to accept it when she realizes this can be used as a tool to galvanize them against Gehn.
- And Now You Must Marry Me: Gehn springs this on her in Book of Atrus. It doesn't pan out for him.
- Beyond the Impossible: The novels feature her Age "Torus", a stable doughnut-shaped world, which features a huge waterfall that falls through the planet's core, turns into rain and gets carried back by clouds to refill the ocean, that in turn feeds the waterfall. Atrus' reaction to first seeing this was that, until then, he had thought it impossible to do such things with the Art.
- Most of Catherine's Ages seem to have a touch of insanity, including the equally trippy Serenia. Atrus even acknowledges this when he realizes that Myst Island couldn't have been written by Catherine, because it was too normal!
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: She comes off as one on occasion due to the bizarre nature of her Ages and her enigmatic dialogue, especially in the novels.
- Distressed Damsel: Riven.
- Dreaming of Things to Come: Implied to have this ability.
- Foil: To Gehn. Both are outcasts from their respective civilizations who are elevated to a position of godhood by the Rivenese people. However, unlike Gehn, who abuses his godhood for personal glory, Catherine reluctantly uses her position as a means liberate the Rivenese. Gehn believes in the superiority of the D'ni race and has rejected his human blood, whereas Catherine works among the D'ni as a representative of the human capacity to excel at the Art. She is also shown to be an exceptional Age writer, while his Ages fall apart due to ineptitude.
- Both Catherine and Gehn start off the game trapped on Riven by their own children. Additionally, with the end of Riven, both of them have witnessed the destruction of the worlds they were born in.
- The similarities between them get a humorous nod in Book of D'ni, when Atrus is offered a pipe similar to Gehn's by a D'ni villager. After Atrus accepts it out of pure courtesy, Catherine immediately takes it from him and smokes it like a boss.
- Good Parents: She still cares for her sons despite their transgressions. In Revelation, Sirrus has a potted plant given to him by her, while one memory of Achenar's centers on him gushing about his mother bringing him clean clothes.
- Happily Married
- Intergenerational Friendship: With her grandmother-in-law Anna.
- Mayfly-December Romance: Downplayed. Atrus's D'ni blood ensures that he'll outlive her, but he still ages, and he doesn't outlive her by that much.
- Messianic Archetype: The Moiety see her as this.
- Mysterious Waif: As a young girl in Book of Atrus.
- Mysterious Woman
- Rescue Romance: One of her cousins saves Atrus from drowning when he accidentally ingests Rivenese water, and Catherine nurses him back to health. Later, her clever planning with Anna helps Atrus escape.
- The Ghost: In Revelation, where she has a journal and dialogue in memory flashbacks, but never actually appears.
- In the first game as well, where she is referenced often, but her fate is left unrevealed until the sequel.
- The Illegible: Probably has the most chicken-scratch handwriting out of any character, perhaps to demonstrate that English is not her first language. This is especially evident in Revelation where her journal would be nigh-unreadable if not for the narration.
- Women Are Wiser
Atrus' father and the main antagonist of Riven. Played by "Francis Douglas Arthur Caston", or simply John Keston.
- A God Am I: Has a massive god complex, entering the Ages he writes and declaring himself to be a god to the inhabitants.
- And I Must Scream: Gehn suffers this fate in Riven if you do things right.
- Archnemesis Dad: To his son Atrus.
- Beige Prose: Exaggerated. Rather than actually learn the art of the Art, like his son, Gehn treats writing like a science, scavenging through old D'ni linking books to learn "formulas" and deleting any "unnecessary" words to preserve his ink supply. This has a direct and negative effect on the stability of his worlds. Atrus, who spends years and years trying to stabilize his Magnum Opus, the book of Riven, compares his work to looking at a collage of masterful tapestries and paintings haphazardly cut apart and strung together with no regard for cohesion or style.
- Disease Bleach: Never explicitly stated, but his hair is mentioned to already be white at the age of 33 in Book of Atrus. This could imply that he experienced this trope after the loss of his wife or from the general trauma in his early years.
- Distinguished Gentleman's Pipe: Constantly smoking from one in both the games and the books. Its not tobacco: Its extract from poisonous frogs he captures.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Mentioned very briefly in Atrus's journal for the Stoneship Age in Myst, with a bit of contextual foreshadowing thrown in for good measure.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Most of his diary is filled with pompous declarations and ranting... until you reach the page where he grieves for his wife whom he has not seen in years. There is a teardrop stain in the corner.
- Evil Gloating: Most of his dialogue, when he's not trying to manipulate the player into sympathizing with him.
- Evil Old Folks: He has more in common with Sirrus than his son.
- Faux Affably Evil: He is softspoken and unfailingly cordial in your conversations with him, and he claims that he's a better man for his time trapped in Riven - even expressing regret for trying to kill Atrus during the backstory. It's clearly just a mask to disguise his true ambitions: if allowed, he'll gladly shoot Atrus dead, shoot you as well, or even leave you in the Trap Book for all eternity. During a bad ending he goes so far as to politely apologize for shooting you with a poison dart and muse nostalgically on the chance of seeing Atrus again while you slowly die in the background.
- Freudian Excuse: Being taken from his parents at a young age seems to have had a particularly traumatic affect on him, to the extent that he's still bitter about it as an adult.
- Losing Keta seems to be the other major thing. The time gap between Book of Ti'ana and Book of Atrus makes it ambiguous which event is his true Start of Darkness, since we don't get to see his state of mind prior to her loss.
- Game-Over Man: Takes over for Atrus in this regard. If you release him from the trap book, he will puzzle over your naivete and force you to take his place. Likewise, if you set him loose on Riven, he orders his guards to plug both you and Atrus with poison blowdarts.
- Genre Savvy: When you finally meet him, Gehn doesn't try to refute anything Atrus told you about him, doesn't try to bribe you, and doesn't try to glorify his evil deeds. He instead says he's grown remorseful over his past actions during his long imprisonment, and is currently trying to protect the people of Riven from the Age's impending collapse and a small group of terrorists. Of course, he's blatantly lying, but he manages it more convincingly than most, especially considering the strong emphasis on redemption seen in the series which might lead a Wrong Genre Savvy player to take him at his word.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Half human and half D'ni.
- Human Mom Non Human Dad: Human mother, D'ni father.
- I Did What I Had to Do: As a way to justify his A God Am I behavior.
- Ill Boy: As an infant in Book of Ti'ana. He improves. Sort of.
- It's All About Me
- Kick the Dog: Gehn built a ceremonial gallows to abuse his position as self-appointed "God" of Riven, complete with an elevator throne to preside over the execution. The location is visited early in the game and the means of death is discovered upon simply exploring the islands.
- Man in White & Putting on the Reich: Gehn wears a white dress uniform with bullet buttons and epaulettes. Presumably, these were his generalissimo duds from when he was in charge of Riven.
- Offing the Offspring: Any goodwill between him and his son is long extinguished.
- Smoking is Not Cool: He's one of the series' main antagonists and is the only major character shown to be a heavy smoker.
- Villains Out Shopping: The supplemental booklet for the soundtrack contains extra pages from Gehn's journal where he discusses some of his hobbies.
- What Happened to the Squee?: You don't hear from Gehn after he is imprisoned. Does he mend? Does he die unreformed? Is he lost in the library fire?
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: His journal in the 233rd Age seems to indicate that he sees his deceased father this way. Additionally, the portraits in his room feature his father alongside his wife, while his much maligned mother is curiously absent.
A man who wants revenge against Atrus for the horrific crimes his sons caused to his homeland; and the main villain of Exile.
- Anti-Villain: He is simply an innocent victim of Sirrus and Achenar's reign of terror, trapped alone on a desolate age for decades and unable to return to his wife and children.
- Ascended Fanboy: Brad Dourif plays Saavedro in Myst 3. He was a big Myst fan at the time.
- Axe-Crazy: Though he will kill you at the drop of a hat if given the opportunity.
- Being Tortured Makes You Evil: To at least some extent, his misanthropy stems from his treatment by Atrus' sons.
- Big "NO!"
- Drop the Hammer
- Fate Worse Than Death: In one of his rants to Atrus, he mentions how Sirrus and Achenar destroyed his civilization and separated him from his family, concluding that "It would have been better if I had died." In one of the endings, you can put him in an even worse fate than the one Sirrus and Achenar put him through.
- Foil: To the Stranger. Both were trapped in a strange world because of Atrus' mistakes, but whereas the Stranger was able to solve the predicament and subsequently chose to be helpful, Saavedro had no means of escape, slowly went mad from isolation, and devoted his energies to revenge.
- He Who Fights Monsters
- I Have Releeshahn: Holds the only contact Atrus has to his people hostage in order to get him to fix what Sirrus and Achenar did 20 years prior.
- I Lied: Saavedro offers to return Releeshahn to the player freely at the end of Myst III when it turns out he can't return home without help. If you take up his offer directly, he gleefully tosses the book into an abyss and scampers off home.
- It's Personal
- Large Ham
- Last of His Kind: Saavedro thinks himself to be the last of the Narayani race due to a rather nasty civil war that occurred on his home Age. This is also not the case.
- Not Evil, Just Misunderstood
- Rapid-Fire "No!": Saavedro has two, alluding to the final line of Brad Dourif's first film character.
- Villainous Breakdown: Once you finally manage to turn the tables on him.
YeeshaThe daughter of Atrus and Catherine.
- Achievements in Ignorance: Yeesha can do a lot of things when writing Ages that were previously thought impossible. It turns out that a lot of these supposedly hard-and-fast natural laws surrounding the process of writing linking books, were just ancient traditions which had been around so long they assumed they must be laws. By being raised and taught in an environment where those weren't drummed into her head, Yeesha is able to accomplish things that everything her forefathers knew told them should cause her worlds to self-destruct.
- Adaptation Dye-Job: She's brownish/sandy blonde like Atrus in Revelation, but as an adult she has black hair, making her look more like Catherine.
- Broken Bird: In End Of Ages.
- Bound and Gagged: In Revelation.
- Creepy Child: Later part of Myst IV - Sirrus possesses Yeesha's body. He does a good job at impersonating her, but his language slips through. Comes to a head in the bad endings, in which she smiles sweetly as she shoots you with a crossbow.
- Daddy's Girl: Her father always calls her "my desert bird". In End Of Ages, when everything falls apart, they still have each other.
- Distressed Damsel: Just like her mother. It must run in the family.
- Meaningful Name: Yeesha means "laughter" in D'ni. Inverted later in her life, sadly.
- Messianic Archetype: Subverted. She fails to fulfill the role due to her own pride.
- Sins of Our Fathers: "And a daughter will carry the burden of her father."
- The Chosen One: She writes in a letter to Atrus: "I have seen new life, and brought it forth myself. And I go now to become the grower. If only you could see. Perhaps you do." Subverted.
- Third Time's the Charm: This could be unintentional, but as numbers are important to the D'ni, maybe it's no coincidence that Atrus has three children. He feels a lot of guilt and pain over the fact that the first two end up evil, so he goes out of his way to make sure he doesn't make the same mistakes with his daughter. She ends up good, though troubled, and plays an important role in the future of D'ni.
- Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Goes from a happy, lively 10-year-old to a brooding, desperate adult who seems to have the weight of the world on her shoulders.
- Uneven Hybrid: 1/8th D'ni.
- Her full ethnic (racial) breakdown: 1/2 Rivenese (with possible Earth origins if the Rivenese language is any indication), 1/4 Amad Indian (Earth native), 1/8 D'ni (Ronay), 1/8 unspecified European (Earth native).
- Videogame Cruelty Potential: Releasing her pet ladybugs in Revelation just for the heck of it.
Guildmaster KadishA D'ni engineer and the last owner of The Watcher's Sanctuary. The Many of the ages explored in Uru were his work.
- A God Am I: Believed himself to be 'The Grower,' one prophesized to restore the D'ni civilization to it's former glory.
- Death by Materialism: When the the fall of D'ni started, he retreated to his vault and locked himself inside to be with his valuables... lacking any food or water. He didn't use the linking book he had with him due to the terror of dying away from his riches.
- Dem Bones: All that remains of Kadish is a bleached skeleton in a tattered robe. Unless one were to be in the Alternate Vault.
- Light is Not Good: Kadish is strongly associated with light. Two of the puzzles leading to his vault feature lighting the floor in some manner, he created a bio-luminescent bacteria that could light the waters in the D'ni Cavern. In short, He brought light to D'ni, both literally and figuratively. This enlightenment was a corrupting force, according to Yeesha. His actions and beliefs were what truly doomed D'ni during the fall.
- Not Quite Dead: Yeesha, in what was both an act of pity, and to prove who the Grower truly is, wrote an alternate version of the age of Kadish Tolsola. The vault within is empty of both treasure and Kadish. It is unknown what fate Kadish met in the Alternate Vault, but it is possible that some version of Kadish still lives.
- Posthumous Character: He is long dead by the time the player finds him, but his story is used by Yeesha to illustrate the fall of D'ni.
- Time Travel: He wrote the age of Adhony, which he claims can be used to accomplish this. This is Subverted when you figure out how the age truly functions.
- Unwinnable by Design: An In-Universe Example, Kadish's Path of the Shell, was designed this way. The way to the tree is blocked by a bolder that could freely roll up the path, but would always block the exit. No matter what anyone tried, the bolder would always return to the start, and there was no way around. The Bolder is not the true path of the shell. It is referred to as the path of the stone. The true path of the shell is simply to wait in the right place.
EsherOne of the last pure-blood survivors of the D'ni who guides you to help secure the Tablet in Myst V.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: If you give him the Tablet.
- Fantastic Racist: He thinks of the D'ni as superior to all other races. He also appears to have appropriated the Terahnee word "Bahro" (used to refer to all non-Ronay) to refer to the creatures that link naturally.
- Last of His Kind: He believes so, though there are many other D'ni living on Releeshahn.
- Mr. Exposition: He shows up A LOT in Myst V. Perhaps even way too much.
- Treacherous Advisor
- Villainous Breakdown: "You... idiot! Moronic lump of filth! You are nothing! Rrghh — I needed the power! I needed it! D'ni needed me! You threw it away to this witch and her legion of scum, the demon slaves! You have released the slaves as masters! You've turned the small to great! Curse the Maker..."
Ti'ana (Anna)The human woman who stumbled upon the D'ni civilization after the death of her father. Grandmother of Atrus. Inadvertently causes the destruction of the D'ni city after advocating against Veovis's execution.
- Action Girl: Despite Myst not being an especially action-driven series, her adventurous nature and stubbornness tends to give off this vibe.
- Arc Words: "Atrus...what do you see?"
- Cool Old Lady: Becomes one later in life.
- Determinator: Oh boy. Anna set off on her own into the wild with nothing but a wagon full of supplies after her father's death. After her entire adopted civilization is destroyed because of her mistake, leaving her a widow, she simply gets up and dusts herself off, raising two children in the barren desert.
- Deciding to bring Gehn home from the Guild of Books without informing anyone, and persisting even after being turned away by the security guards.
- When Gehn takes Atrus to D'ni, she secretly follows them for years, just to make sure that Atrus is safe.
- Dropped a Bridge on Her: Lived to a ripe old age, only to be killed off in an undisclosed accident on one of Catherine's ages.
- Early-Bird Cameo: She's mentioned in Gehn's journal in Riven before her appearances in the book series.
- Fiery Redhead
- Good Parents: Tried to be a Good Parent to both her son and grandson, failing terribly with the former. She plays the trope straight with Atrus.
- Her own parents qualify as well, even if they are dead.
- Happy Rain: With her future husband in Book of Ti'ana, and her grandson in Book of Atrus. The scene in Book of Ti'ana is also an example of Romantic Rain, as it's a turning point in their relationship.
- Intergenerational Friendship: Anna and Catherine had a close friendship during their time together on Myst Island.
- Interspecies Romance: With Aitrus.
- Maligned Mixed Marriage: The D'ni are not happy about one of their own mingling with an outsider.
- Mayfly-December Romance: Her husband is over 70 when they marry, but because of his species' slow aging, he's still her peer. Ironically, she far outlives him.
- Meaningful Name: An In-Universe example: the D'ni seem to be unable to pronounce her human name correctly. This eventually causes Aitrus to give her the name Ti'ana, the D'ni word for "Storyteller", due his appreciation of her tales about life on the surface.
- The Mentor: Anna takes on the role of mentor for her grandson Atrus.
- Mike Nelson Destroyer of Worlds
- Missing Mom: Killed in a climbing accident, as she eventually reveals to Aitrus.
- Mr. Imagination: Has this tendency, as shown by her unusual interpretation of the D'ni tunneling equipment.
- My Greatest Failure: Accidentally triggering the fall of D'ni.
- Posthumous Character: She's portrayed this way in the videogame series.
- Retcon: Her character didn't exist yet in original Myst, so her having lived on Myst with Atrus and Catherine comes off like this. Given a nod in the remakes of the game, which give her a headstone on the island.
- Widow Witch: Purposely Invoked by her on the traders who visit the Cleft. She warns Atrus that the traders would sell him into slavery if they knew he existed, so she pretends to be this trope to keep his existence hidden.
AitrusA D'ni citizen and member of the Guild of Surveyors. Grandfather of Atrus.
- Apocalyptic Log: His escape map of the D'ni tunnels after the fall.
- Determinator: He spends days wandering the destroyed D'ni tunnels to create an escape map that can get his remaining family out of danger, then re-writes a descriptive book into a death Age, all while he's still dying from the plague. He's ultimately not even killed by the plague itself, but when he links to said death Age himself to trick A'gaeris.
- Early on, his choice to forfeit his guild status, something shown to be extremely important to him, in order to be able to marry Ti'ana.
- Distressed Dude: Briefly when Veovis and A'gaeris knock him out and chain him up.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Quite literally, as a photo of him appears on the wall in Gehn's room in Riven. He's also mentioned in Gehn's journal.
- Evil Former Friend: Veovis.
- Good Parents: A rare example for the series, he's for the most part a competent and caring father. Subverted, however: D'ni culture norms sometimes cause him to do things that prove harmful to his family, with some of these actions forming the basis of his son's Freudian Excuse.
- Heroic Sacrifice: At the end of Book of Ti'ana.
- Interspecies Romance: With Ti'ana.
- Maligned Mixed Marriage
- Mayfly-December Romance
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Downplayed. While Aitrus is happy to call the D'ni out on their crap when they mistreat his wife and son, he expresses pride in his culture and enforces his family's participation in D'ni social rituals.
- Posthumous Character: He's portrayed this way in the videogame series.
- Proud Scholar Race Guy
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Veovis's red.
- Renaissance Man: As a consequence of D'ni schooling. Despite being a part of a laborer guild, he has a broad knowledge base and understands the basics of Age writing enough to covertly start penning one of his own.
- Taking You with Me: Defeats A'gaeris by tricking him into linking to a death age, killing both of them.
- Tunnel King: As per his occupation, he's very knowledgeable about the tunnels in and around D'ni. This later saves his family's life when they are able to use his maps to escape the plague-ravaged city.
- Unwitting Pawn: His strained relationship with Veovis is taken advantage of by A'gaeris.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Among the jaded D'ni. He expresses an interest in exploring the surface world and meeting its inhabitants; when Ti'ana arrives, he's one of the first to accept her as an equal. His people tend to respond rather pessimistically to him as a result.
VeovisA young D'ni noblemen with a hot temper, a member of the Guild of Writers. Allies himself with A'gaeris and plots the destruction of D'ni.
- Aristocrats Are Evil: An example using the title of Lord.
- Big Bad: Subverted as his actual role is confined to Book of Ti'ana, but he's also jointly responsible for setting into motion the events of the series.
- Cassandra Truth: A'gaeris' initial framing of Veovis for murder results in one, due to convincingly forged evidence. The entire fall of D'ni can be seen as A'gaeris consciously weaponizing this trope.
- Even Evil Has Standards: A strange example. Even after decimating his entire civilization, he's alarmed when A'gaeris suggests that they leave D'ni and find an Age on which they can rule as gods. Although it can be argued that by this point, My God, What Have I Done? had set in for Veovis.
- Foil: To Aitrus. Both of them are proud of their D'ni heritage, and initially want the best for their civilization, but while Aitrus is open to contact with the surface, Veovis fears it will bring the destruction of D'ni. Interestingly, neither one of them is completely wrong. Ti'ana's arrival did spell D'ni's doom, but it was Veovis's hatred of her that caused the fall.
- Evil Former Friend: To Aitrus.
- Fantastic Racism: His resentment of Ti'ana for being human is one of the driving forces behind his Start of Darkness.
- Heel–Face Revolving Door: Good, evil, and then back to good again at the end.
- Noble Bigot: At first, anyways.
- Omnicidal Maniac
- Sanity Slippage: Due to A'gaeris's manipulations.
- The Dog Bites Back: When he starts to have doubts about his actions, which causes A'gaeris to decide Veovis has outlived his usefulness.
- Redemption Equals Death: Killed for refusing to rule over an Age as a god alongside A'gaeris.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: The red to Aitrus's blue.
- Royal Brat: Shades of it due to his upbringing.
- Unwitting Pawn: To A'gaeris.
- Walking Spoiler
A'gaerisA former member of the Guild of Writers who was long ago stripped of his title. Allies himself with Veovis and plots the destruction of D'ni.
- A God Am I: His ultimate goal.
- Big Bad: Turns out to be a straighter example than Veovis, as everything that happens in the series is a result of his actions.
- Dragon-in-Chief: If not the Big Bad.
- Fantastic Racism: Although it's unclear how much of this was simply a ploy to gain Veovis's trust.
- Love Makes You Evil: Implied.
- Man Behind the Man: The man behind Veovis.
- Manipulative Bastard
- Omnicidal Maniac
- Taking You with Me: How he is defeated.
- The Chessmaster: Among other things, he successfully plays Aitrus and Veovis against each other to further damage their relationship and get Veovis under his control. While the D'ni seem to mostly remember Veovis and/or Ti'ana as being responsible for causing the fall later on in the series, A'gaeris was the one pulling the strings all along.
- The Philosopher: An antagonistic example. He's even referred to as such by the other characters.
- Walking Spoiler
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: A'gaeris eventually turns on Veovis.
MarrimA girl from the Age of Averone who becomes one of Atrus's apprentices in Book of D'ni.
- Dead Girl Junior: Names her daughter Anna.
- Happily Married: To Eedrah in the epilogue.
- Important Haircut: Gets one part of the way through the story, centered around the sentiment that Long Hair Is Feminine.
- Interspecies Romance: With Eedrah.
- Intergenerational Friendship: She and her cousin's friendship with Atrus and Catherine.
- Jumped at the Call
- Mythology Gag: A plucky human girl travels to a far-off civilization and falls in love with a misfit young man from said civilization just before the civilization is completely decimated by a deadly plague. This references the events of Book of Ti'ana, with Marrim as Ti'ana.
- Plucky Girl
- Small Town Boredom: Expresses this as part of her desire to leave her home Age.
- The Cameo: She appears on one of the tapestries in Atrus's study at the beginning of Exile.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist
Eedrah ro'JethheOne of the few Terahnee in Book of D'ni who deigns to see the Relyimah.
- Defector from Decadence
- Department of Redundancy Department: His father's name is Jethhe ro'Jethhe.
- Happily Married: To Marrim in the epilogue.
- Hidden Depths: Because if he shows these depths, he's a dead man.
- I Am Not My Relatives
- Interspecies Romance: With Marrim.
- Mythology Gag: A misfit young man from a far-off civilization falls in love with a plucky human girl just before said civilization is completely decimated by a deadly plague. This references the events of Book of Ti'ana, with Eedrah as Aitrus.
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Due to an event in his childhood, he lacks the social conditioning of the other Terahnee, allowing him to see the way his people treat the Relyimah. He's forced to keep quiet about it, or face death at the hands of his own family.
- Soap Opera Disease: Suffering from some kind of ambiguous frailty that makes him weak and easily tired.
- Reality Is Unrealistic: His double life must have been extremely taxing. Such stress can easily take a toll on one's health.
- I Owe You My Life: The reason he isn't socially conditioned like the other Terahnee.
- Uncanny Family Resemblance: Apparently the case for Eedrah's entire family, as his father cheerfully demonstrates to Atrus. This scene implies that the Terahnee practice eugenics on themselves.
- Walking Spoiler: You can only say so much about his character without revealing the true nature of the Terahnee.
ro'Eh ro'DanLast king of Terahnee
UtaA slave child on Terahnee.