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Anime / Zoids: Wild

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Zoids: Wild is the firth series in the Zoids franchise.

The story follows Arashi, a young teenager from a remote village, as he attempts to capture and bond with a wild Zoid. His attempts are met with failure and disapproval from his grandfather, who doesn't want him running off and never coming back like Arashi's father. During a nearly disastrous attempt at capturing a Pincers, Quade of Team Supreme saves Arashi. Supreme is a band of traveling Zoid Seekers looking for Liger, a legendary white Lion-type that escaped from the clutches of the Dark Metal Empire. The Liger is said to have unspeakable power and defeated 100 soldiers on its way out.


Liger eventually shows up just outside the village, where it's pursued by the Empire's goons. Arashi finds Liger and tries to convince him to let Arashi become his rider. While this doesn't go anywhere at first, Arashi freeing Liger from the hunter squad's tasers despite being shocked himself convinces Liger to team up with Arashi and fight them off. After some training with Quade, Arashi sets off for adventure, first to just get to see the world and later to find his missing father and the mythical Ancient Treasure Z while fighting off the forces of the Dark Metal Empire.


This series provides examples of:

  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: As always, the series is traditional 2D animation (though digitally animated still), while the Zoids are 3D models. However, the lighting and design fit much better than before, with the main tell being that the Zoids move a lot more often and a lot more fluidly than the human characters.
  • The Ace: Battalia is basically good at whatever she wants to be good at. She's a skilled artist, mechanic, and fighter. She even manages to get close to Liger despite his normally wild temper.
  • Action Dad: Arashi's dad was the one who first defended their village from the Dark Metal Empire using a Brachiosaurus-type Zoid. Then he vanished.
  • Aerith and Bob: A combination of Japanese and English names for the English dub, like Arashi and Quade, as well as the Dark Metal Empire's members that go anywhere from the normal-sounding Drake to Malware, Dyna, and Gigaboss. The Japanese version names roughly half its characters after food, with the rest being real names like Arashi (Japanese) and Gallagher (Western) with no real pattern.
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  • A Death in the Limelight: Quaid basically disappears from the show after the first few episodes, but comes back briefly to give him some focus before he dies fighting Gigaboss.
  • Alternate Continuity: Wild is a hard reboot of the original anime continuity.
  • Aloof Ally: Liger to Arashi. Even after they start to get to know and trust each other, he's headstrong and willful. If he wants to do something, he'll run off without Arashi, and if he doesn't want to do something, it can take a lot of begging or outright bargaining to get Liger to act. This goes out the window as soon as things go south, though, where Liger puts his pride aside to protect his rider and win at all costs.
  • Ambiguously Human: Tremor. He looks like a robot and doesn't talk. Occasionally, steam might come out of his "ears" and mouth. But he eats food and may just be wearing powered armor. In fact, only his head and hands seem to actually be made of metal, since every other par of his body not covered by his jacket or shorts appears to be a tight-fitting bodysuit. He's also capable of using Wild Blast, which inherently requires a close connection and strong emotions, meaning at least part of him is actually alive.
  • Amusing Injuries: More than once, Liger throws Arashi off without warning and seemingly for no reason. And then laughs.
  • Animal Mecha: Zoids are explicitly defined as mechanical lifeforms. It's revealed early on that they went "extinct" at some point but can be revived by electrifying their central power core. Domesticated Zoids are revived in laboratories by scientists and engineers before being sent out to people who will use them, while wild Zoids are born when a deactivated Zoid is brought to life through a natural electrical phenomenon like a lightning strike. The combination of the less refined electrical power and not being handled by humans makes them far more unpredictable and much stronger.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Gigaboss's modus operandi. He's huge and strong, so people should listen to him. He's taken over half of Ferroterra to demonstrate this.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!:
    • How Arashi starts out once he partners up with Liger. Quade quickly teaches him that this strategy isn't always a very good one.
    • How Drake fights, as well. However, using Dark Blast and Wild Blast, after his Heel–Face Turn with his Gilraptor Ruin has the speed to back it up, meaning very few can do anything to fight back.
    • Gigaboss fights this way mainly because his main Zoid is a Gilraptor like Drake's, giving him the same advantages. When he breaks out his Death Rex, Demise, he just has the advantage of being able to tank almost any attack while having one of the biggest, most powerful Zoids to make up for a lack of strategy. This ends up being his undoing.
  • Berserk Button: Arashi hates being called a little kid. He also hates being tied down, especially by his grandfather. Both can be explained by him being a teenager.
  • Beware My Stinger Tail: Battalia's Scorpear, Needle, gets her name from the large stinger on the end of her tail. It's more than capable of piercing the metal armor of a Pincers, deactivating it.
  • Big Bad: Gigaboss, whose name tells you everything you need to know - he's big (Giga) and in charge (boss).
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: Several Zoids are based on insects and arachnids. Pincers and Kabtor pair up as Japanese Beetle Brothers, Spideath/Phobia is a spider, and Scorpear/Needle is a scorpion. There's also Catalga/Spineless, based on a silkwork, and Gusock/Gyro, a giant isopod.
  • Big Eater: Scrapes from Team Supreme got that name from his love of food. Arashi also gets shown eating quite a lot whenever he manages to get a meal, but he also constantly forgets to bring food with him on his journey.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Drake first demonstrates the Dark Metal Empire's ability to force a Zoid into a berserk state, called the Dark Blast. Unlike the Wild Blast which is activated by a key that the Zoid grants its rider when their bond is strong, the Dark Blast is activated by overriding the Zoid's system using a hacking key that resembles a sword.
  • Broad Strokes: The overall plot is based loosely on that of the original continuity, and most closely follows Zoids: Chaotic Century's. However, a lot of it is mished, mashed, and rehashed in ways that make it stand out. In particular, it's aimed at a younger audience.
  • Camp Gay: Zamaas, the commander of the second squad of Deleters that Arashi and Quade fight off has eyeliner, a Noblewoman's Laugh, and flirts with both of them. And this is kept in the Y7-rated dub.
  • Cannot Tell a Joke: Arashi, among the many other things he's not that great at. His sense of humor is pretty lame, especially if you ask Liger.
  • Cast from Calories: How Wild Blast actually works. Both rider and Zoid use up their energy much faster than normal, and using it too much leaves them tired.
  • Chekhov's Gun: While Battalia fixes Liger up, a bit of oil gets leaked out near the cave that she and Arashi are about to explore. The episode's mooks have their Pincers Zoids follow the scent, leading them to the secret they were after.
  • Child Prodigy: Analog/Onigiri. He's a renowned Zoid researcher and mechanic that the DME kidnaps and forces to work for them. After escaping, he joins Team Freedom.
  • Covered in Scars: Seems to be a popular look in this series.
    • When Liger first shows up outside of Arashi's village, it's covered in deep scratches from the DME's attempts at controlling it as well as having to fight off 100 of their troops to escape its captivity.
    • Scrapes is a bit downplayed but has scars on his arms, face, and belly, including some that appear to have required stitches.
    • Gigaboss is covered head to toe in large scars from fighting Zoids with his bare hands.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: Drake's parents were loving and only joined The Empire because they thought it would offer a nice home and stability, lies they were fed to convince them to join. When they learned what kind of mistake they made, they were killed after sending their child away. Unfortunately, Drake didn't know it was the DME that killed them, instead joining them to give himself the change to get revenge.
  • Disappeared Dad: Arashi's father left to fight the Empire and never came back, but they haven't attempted to capture the village in the intervening years since. When Team Supreme arrives and one of its members is riding Grax, his father's Brachio-type Zoid, Arashi tries to get more information but the new rider doesn't know anything about it. Quade might, though, since Arashi's father trained Quade. But Arashi never asked, and Quade only started to figure out Arashi is his mentor's son right before they split up. In the end, it turns out Ikazuchi simply lost track of time, meaning his 10 year absence was a mistake.
  • Dub Name Change:
    • The English dub drops the Edible Theme Naming in favor of mostly normal names for good characters and computer related puns for the Dark Metal Empire. The Japanese version also called them the Death Metal Empire.
    • Zoid names were also changed, but in a unique way - some of the names are for the species as a whole like Pincers or Grax, while others are the names of individual creatures like Team Supreme's two beetle-type Zoids, Flyhorn and Winghorn.
  • Edible Theme Naming: The Japanese version could be mistaken as having had Akira Toriyama come up with the names, because almost everyone is named after food.
  • The Empire: The Dark/Death Metal Empire, who have already conquered a sizable portion of Ferroterra but want the whole thing for themselves.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: The Death Metal Empire mainly uses Dinosaur-type Zords like Rapterrix and Gilraptor. There's also Grax, the Brachiosaurus-type Zoid piloted by Team Supreme's Tremor and formerly bt Arashi's father. Gigaboss pilots the terrifying Demise, one of the largest and most powerful Zoids in the series.
  • Expy: Many Zoids are based on older ones, rather than just being new designs based on the same animals.
    • (Wild) Liger is one for Liger Zero, being a legendary white Liger with massive untapped potential and a primarily claw-based attak.
    • Zaber Fang is based on the one from previous series. While it's called Fang Tiger in the Japanese version, its similarity is still intentional.
    • Cannonbull is one for Dibison, Leena's Zoid from New Century.
    • Command Wolf gets one in the form of Alpha Shadow, including having a back-mounted cannon rather than a blade weapon.
    • Demise is treated with the same fear and reverence as Death Saurer. It also shares some similarities with Berserk Fury.
    • The Dark Metal Empire's Deleters wear masks that, combined with their clothing and punk rock style spikes give a similar impression to Borderlands's Psychos.
  • Five-Man Band: Team Supreme.
  • Friend to All Children: Liger has no trouble letting children play on him, even though he otherwise Hates Being Touched.
  • Furry Reminder: Played with. Rather than reminding you that Zoids are animals, the show reminds you that they're machines. The first several episodes treat them basically as just large animals with some quirks, but after Arashi and Liger meet Battalia, she chides Arashi about mechanical maintenance and tightens up some loose parts on Liger. The oil he leaked while she fixed a line lead the episode's antagonists to their location.
  • The Gadfly: Gigaboss pretends to have some very skewed priorities in addition to demanding absolute obedience from his subordinates. For example, he calls Drake just as he's about to finish off Arashi to ask for some snacks and party favors. While it's at least partly because he's eccentric and flightly, it's also because he just likes to screw with Drake.
  • Hates Being Touched: Liger, for the most part. He's a wild Zoid, and a very powerful one at that. His abuse at the hands of the Dark Metal Empire made him distrusting of humans, but gives Arashi a chance when he promises to pay attention to Liger's wishes. Other humans who get too close tend to get knocked down and roared at. Though it may be more of a case of picking up on intentions, as Battalia was able to get close and he didn't seem to have much trouble letting letting the kids from the cowboy village play on him.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Drake, after he finds out Gigaboss was the one to kill his parents and only took him in so he could be killed after no longer being of use.
  • The Hilarity of Hats: Buggy and Chuckles, the mayors of the baseball and cowboy villages respectively, both have hats with exaggerated proportions to show they're in charge. Also, Liger wearing a normal human-size hat can't be anything other than funny.
  • Hot-Blooded: What it takes to unlock Wild Blast. Both Zoid and rider have to be at the peak of righteous fury and be in sync to activate it.
  • It's Personal: The reason Liger runs off towards a DME base without warning. It doesn't go well - he gets captured.
  • Large and in Charge: Gigaboss towers over most other characters. He is also absolutely jacked, being mostly muscle. Unlike other similarly built characters, he didn't skip leg day, instead having a realistic if eerily tall build.
  • A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far Far Away...: Takes place on the planet Ferroterra, which is very similar to Earth except for the existence of mechanical creatures buried deep in the ground, which can be brought to life by electricity.
  • Merchandise-Driven: The series, as ever, mainly exists as a marketing vehicle for toys. In particular, mechanical model kits that walk and attack.
  • Mooks: The Empire uses masked ground troops called Deleters.
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Gabrigator/Overbyte is a toothy alligator-type Zoid whose Wild Blast involves its head extending forward, allowing its already huge mouth to become twice as long - large enough to fit Liger inside it.
  • Mythology Gag: Going with Dub Name Change, Quade's Zoid is called Zaber Fang in the English dubnote . But given that two of his team mates both pilot the same model of Beetle-type Zoid with different names, it may just be what he named it. It's also yellow like the Tigers Team's Zaber Fangs in Zoids: New Century.
  • Never Say "Die": The Dub Name Change from Death Metal Empire to Dark Metal Empire. And while alternatives ("eliminate" and "destroy") are common, it's occasionally subverted.
  • Nice Hat:
    • Tremor wears a blue baseball cap, which he decides to replace with a red one while fighting in the annual Zoids tournament for the baseball village. He goes back to his blue one after hitting some Deleters in the face with the red one.
    • Both the baseball and cowboy villages seem to have wearing the appropriate style hat as a requirement. Liger even gets to wear a (normal human sized) Stetson. For a... looser definition of "nice", both of the mayors have weird looking variations - Buggy has a ridiculously long visor while Chuckles has the tallest cowboy hat in town.
  • No Sense of Humor: Arashi thinks Liger is like this. It's more that Liger is a Silent Snarker for the most part.
  • Panthera Awesome:
    • First and foremost is Liger. It's a Lion-type Zoid with the King Claw Wild Blast, it's strong and fast, and its roar can intimidate and sometimes command smaller Zoids.
    • Fang Tiger is a smilodon-based Tiger-type Zoid. It has a similar Wild Blast to Liger's, but with two blades instead of three.
  • Pile Bunker: Tryke, Bastion's Triceradogos, has a massive ran formed from its crest and horns. While it has two prongs instead of just one, it functions in much the same way.
  • The Quiet One: Tremor
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: Every single one of the Dark Metal Empire's generals are a piece of work with their own gimmicky speech patterns and habits. Except Drake, oddly. Guess who makes a Heel–Face Turn?
  • Raptor Attack: The majority of the Dark Metal Empire's Zoids are small Rapterrix mounts used by their Deleter Mooks. In Japan they're simply called Raptors. The larger, stronger alpha units are called Gilraptors, like Drake's Ruin.
  • Sapient Steed: Zoids are capable of understanding human language, and seem to have some kind of psychic bond that allows their riders to understand them in turn. Battalia is a bit more in tune with Zoids, being able to understand Arashi's Liger as well as gaining his trust the moment they meet. They still act like animals, but have some markedly human personality traits.
  • Schmuck Bait: Liger easily falls for a trap at the entrance of what is implied to be the same Dark Metal Empire base he was tortured at before escaping. His vendetta makes him run toward it and land in a pitfall.
  • Seldom-Seen Species:
    • Gusock/Gyro is based on Bathynomus giganteus, the giant marine isopod.
    • Catalga/Spineless is a silkworm of all things.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Presumably, Quade's yellow Zaber Fang is meant to be a nod to the Hanshin Tigers, like the Zaber Fangs in New Century were.
    • Gigaboss's Japanese name, Gallagher, is transliterated as "Galaga" on the sticker sheet included with his Zoid, Death Rex. It even uses a similar but distinct type face, implying this was intentional.
    • Speaking of Gigaboss's Zoid, its design takes very heavy cues from the Power Rangers reboot, spoiler:specifically the T. rex Battle Zord. Drake and Gigaboss both pilot a Gilraptor with similar coloring and design features. Gigaboss's secret Zoid Demise looks even more like it, including a pair of "wings" of similar shape to the side-mounted guns of the Battle Zord.
  • Silent Snarker: Liger can't speak, being a Zoid and all. But you can tell from his expression when he's just done with Arashi's antics.
  • Terrible Artist: Arashi's drawing skills are pitiful. Battalia's much better art becomes the mark for Team Freedom, replacing the doodle Arashi drew.
  • This Is a Drill: [[spoiler:Demise's Dark Blast involves using its "wings" to ensnare and hold its target still, while its mouth splits all the way down its neck and extending a glowing-hot 4-pronged drill straight into the victim.
  • Top-Heavy Guy: Tremor has huge arms and a muscular barrel chest, but relatively small and skinny legs. He has proportions more close to a robotic gorilla.
  • Stock Footage: Most of the time, Arashi and Liger's Wild Blast uses the same footage. Sometimes it's over a different background, but is still the same character animation.
  • True Companions:
    • Team Supreme don't stick together all the time but instead believe that, even when far apart, their bond as friends and teammates trumps distance.
    • Arashi wants to become this with a Zoid. Liger ends up being the one he gets a chance with. While it takes a while for them to really overcome all of their differences, even early on when Liger is somewhat unconcerned with this, he's protective and loyal to Arashi even if they don't see eye to eye.
  • Tyrannosaurus rex: Gigaboss's Zoid Demise, known as Death Rex in the Japanese version.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Gigaboss used to be a friend of Quade's named Marcellus. However, a combination of wanting the strongest Zoid in the world and constantly losing to Quade's superior fighting style with a weaker Zoid eventually drove him crazy to the point of wanting to Take Over the World.
  • Volumetric Mouth: Gabrigator and Death Rex activate Wild Blast by opening its mouth far wider than normal.
  • Weaponized Headgear: Tremor throws the red hat he got from the baseball village at some Deleters. Unlike most examples, it has about as much impact as you'd expect from a baseball cap and only serves to distract them.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: What Gigaboss plans on doing to Drake. He doesn't get a chance, though.

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