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A Megacorp that effectively controls the planet due to their monopoly of mako, a highly efficient energy source that allowed them to corner the power market and expand their power and influence. Their headquarters is Midgar, an advanced metropolis in the middle of a wasteland thanks to their mako reactors draining the life from the region.
- Arc Villain: They act as the initial antagonists of Final Fantasy VII within Midgar, until Sephiroth puts a sword through President Shinra's gut and the narrative turns attention to his schemes and the party leaves Midgar to pursue him.
- Corporate Warfare: Shinra has a private army consisting of various types of military troopers, genetically-augmented SOLDIER members, and a wide array of robots and mecha.
- Evil, Inc.: Very few moral people work within Shinra's walls, and the few that do tend to end up leaving the company, like Gast and Lucrecia.
- Evil Tower of Ominousness: Their headquarters is a 70-story skyscraper towering over Midgar.
- The Man Behind the Monsters: Every antagonist in the Final Fantasy VII universe can be linked back to them, as it was their discovery of Jenova that allowed scientists like Hojo and Hollander to create beings like Sephiroth and Genesis, and their mako reactors are the reason the planet is in such a miserable state due to draining the lifestream to refine into energy.
- Meaningful Name: According to Yoshinori Kitase, the word "Shinra" derives from the word "myth" in Japanese (神話, shinwa) tying into how Shinra, and many people associated with them, were all about becoming gods and controlling everything.
- Megacorp: They're a power company that runs Midgar, builds and maintains their own personal army, and manufactures numerous consumer products.
- One Nation Under Copyright: They rule Midgar in practice but not name, since the city actually has a mayor, who lampshades he's powerless and Shinra is the one running things. They also have a dominating influence over the rest of the world, since most towns use mako reactors to sustain themselves and Shinra has the military might to conquer them by force if anyone felt like trying to rise against them.
- The Remnant: Following the events of VII, Shinra barely exists anymore — its executive board are all dead aside from Reeve (who founds his own group, the World Regenesis Organization) and Palmer (who is never mentioned in media after the game), they've lost their base of operations and most of their military forces and resources, and people are grateful to the planet for saving them from Meteor, so they refuse to use mako anymore. While Rufus still has the Turks by his side and has wealth and influence of his own, the Shinra Electric Power Company is pretty much gone.
- Villain Protagonist: They and their employees are the protagonists of Before Crisis and Crisis Core.
Son of the president of the Shinra Corporation, he seizes control of the company when his father is killed by Sephiroth and uses its resources to try and track down the rogue soldier. He's apparently killed by Diamond Weapon near the end of VII, but is revealed in Advent Children to have survived.
- Affably Evil: He's quite polite and well-spoken for a villain.
- All There in the Manual: How he survived is left up to the "On The Way To A Smile" novellas to explain. He attempts to tell Cloud directly in Advent Children, but an annoyed Cloud cuts him off and doesn't care.
- The Atoner: A comparatively selfish version. After VII he wants to help rebuild the world, but only because he still wants Shinra to be on top and recognizes that the company needs to rebuild its image, so diverting the company's resources to helping others is a win-win. Dirge of Cerberus implies he's backing Reeve and the World Regenesis Organization to help rebuild the planet. The fact that Rufus is backing the Organization anonymously hints that he isn't as selfish as he seems.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Defied, he's fought as a boss shortly after you first meet him but isn't that tough and has no real power. After that, he never takes part in battle again.
- Badass in Distress: Gets kidnapped/held hostage a lot. Twice in the side story On the Way to a Smile and then is held (for a given value of hostage) by Kadaj in Advent Children. He's even been held as a hostage by the Turks in Before Crisis.
- Badass in a Nice Suit: He's always seen wearing his iconic white suit.
- Badass Longcoat: His artwork implies he wears one under the jacket of his suit. His Compilation redesigns retcon it to just a normal suit.
- Badass Normal: In a world where Materia offers powerful spells, people use weapons as long as their own bodies and military soldiers can be upgraded by getting implanted with foreign cells, Rufus's weapon of choice is... a shotgun.
- Bastardly Speech: His introduction, where he states that his plans are to turn the Planet into a police state. Thankfully, he never gets the chance to go through with it.
- Bastard Understudy: To his father; he's content being the vice-president for now and is loyal as such, but is scheming to make his own plays for power.
- Big Bad Ensemble: He forms this with Sephiroth for the majority of the game until his supposed death.
- Big Bad Wannabe: He gives a grandiose speech about how he's going to rule the world through fear moments after Sephiroth has murdered every last person in his building. Rufus' ambitions have to be put on hold since the world being destroyed is not in his business plans, and once Sephiroth is stopped being a villain just isn't pragmatic for him anyway.
- The Chessmaster: In Advent Children. He manages to spend a great deal of time manipulating Kadaj and his brothers, and possibly Cloud as well.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: Let's put it this way: His dad didn't want him taking over the company because Rufus was even more corrupt than he was. As his page quote demonstrates, he thinks his father's practice to manipulate public opinion to make people like Shinra is too wasteful; he finds fear will do the job just as well.
- Damsel out of Distress: Despite being kidnapped a few times, he never really seems that concerned about it and can generally Xanatos Speed Chess himself into a better situation. If not, the Turks find him eventually.
- Deadpan Snarker His response to the party telling him who they are:What a crew.
- Dual Boss: The one time he's fought, he has his pet Dark Nation casting protective spells on him; both are pushovers (Rufus has the least amount of HP of any major boss enemy.)
- Duel Boss: Played with. Cloud stays behind alone to fight him one-on-one, but Rufus' dog Dark Nation accompanies him into battle. However, Dark Nation dies easily, so it does boil down to just Cloud vs Rufus.
- Flunky Boss: When Cloud fights Rufus on the balcony of the Shinra President's office, he has Dark Nation at his side; Dark Nation is a weaker enemy that casts protective spells.
- Handicapped Badass: Spent Advent Children in a wheelchair for most of the movie. It's partially to hide what the Remnants are after but also because he'd become infected with Geostigma as well as recovering from a broken heel and broken ribs from On the Way to a Smile.
- HeelFace Turn: He toys with it in the first game but remains a firm heel. It takes being blown up by Diamond Weapon to make him do it right. Come Advent Children Rufus seems to have had a slight change of heart, coming to accept the lifestream a cycle of life and death as one of the truths of the planet. He even gives the big bad a speech on how humanity as a collective whole himself included will always rise up to stop catastrophes such as Jenova and Sephiroth whenever they appear.
- I Control My Minions Through...: As he freely admits, he'd much rather control the world through fear rather than through money like his father did.Rufus: I'll control the world with fear. It takes too much to do it like my old man. A little fear will control the minds of the common people. There's no reason to waste money on them.
- Man of Wealth and Taste: He's an antagonist and wears an immaculate white suit at all times with well-groomed hair to boot.
- Meaningful Name: Rufus means 'red haired,' referencing both the red logo of Shinra Corp and that in the original game Rufus's hair tended towards reddish-blonde.
- Nominal Hero: He's a good guy post-VII, but only insomuch that he helps the heroes because the destruction of the world is something he's not keen on letting happen. In the meantime he's still shifty and untrustworthy, and sat back and let Kadaj summon Bahamut SIN to attack Edge while the item Kadaj is looking for in the city is sitting in his lap.
- No One Could Survive That!: His apparent demise in VII — his office is bombarded by energy blasts from Diamond Weapon and blown up.
- Overshadowed by Awesome: In any other game, Rufus' intellect and vast resources would make him a very formidable antagonist. Unfortunately his competition is Sephiroth, putting him firmly in Big Bad Wannabe territory.
- Pet the Dog: He actually gets on very well with the Turks and in On the Way to a Smile, goes out of his way to both help and attempt to save some fellow patients while he is captive. Whether it's due to empathy or pragmatism is debatable.
- Pragmatic Villainy: He's still not a good person and his goal is to keep Shinra on top, but he also recognizes you have to have a livable world to do so.
- Pretender Diss: Delivers one to Kadaj by pointing out that the real Sephiroth would have easily sensed that he had kept Jenova's remains close.Kadaj: Mother?!
Rufus: A good son would have known.
- Pretty Boy: Hes quite slender, and is quite handsome (especially in the remake).
- Punch-Clock Villain: Rufus doesn't hold grudges or act on things like petty revenge. Everything he does is what he considers good for business. Even Barrett had (short-lived) praise for his courage at defending the towns and populations from the Weapons.
- Reassigned to Antarctica: He is put on an "extended assignment overseas" at Junon (in actuality, put under house arrest in Junon) after it became apparent that he aided AVALANCHE in their efforts to eliminate Shinra so as to remove his father from power. Considering the alternatives (ie, being sacked and/or executed), this punishment was actually very light.
- Sawed-Off Shotgun: His Weapon of Choice in VII and Advent Children.
- Sequel Reset: In the original game, Rufus gets seemingly vaporized by the Diamond Weapon after he attempts to break through the barrier that Sephiroth has walled himself behind. For all intents and purposes, the story treats the scene as him being Killed Off for Real. It wasn't until years later in Advent Children that it is revealed that Rufus miraculously survived.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: His white business suit and jacket.
- The Sociopath: Set up as one in the original game, feeling little empathy and wanting to control people using fear to keep them in line. The expanded universe considerably tones it down.
- The Starscream: He had been plotting to take control of the company long before his father died at Sephiroth's handshe was secretly the chief financier of the original incarnation of Avalanche and their inside man in the company, caring not for Avalanche's goals but only for the instability they would bring. When his involvement was uncovered by the Turks, he was merely placed on an extended house arrest as punishment.
- There Is Another: According to extended materials, he has at least two illegitimate half-brothers. The older one, Lazard Deusericus, is the director of SOLDIER in Crisis Core. The Shinra infantryman outside Lazard's office mentions that he reminds him of the VP. The younger one, Evan Townshend, is the focus of the side-story, The Kids Are All Right. Rufus notes that Evan looks much more like their father than he does.
- Troll: To Kadaj in Advent Children. He spends the entire film feigning like he has no idea what Kadaj is doing and who he is, when he knows exactly what's going on. He further keeps the box with Jenova's remains concealed under his cloak the entire film knowing it's what Kadaj is looking for, and when he stands up and casts the cloak off to reveal the box he takes a moment to let Kadaj realize what it is before taunting him and tossing it over the side of a building. When Rufus says "I've never had this much fun", he's being serious; this is all a big joke to him.
- The Unfettered: Nobody has ever seen him cry and he is never shown to have much fear for his own safety, much less those of his subordinates or anyone else. Case of Shinra shows his HeelFace Turn as a calculated method of patiently getting back on top of the world and rebuilding the corporation (which he had done, by the time of Advent Children) after Mako ceased to be a viable power source. Word of God laughs about his scene in Advent Children, "Only someone like Rufus, a big shot president, would be able to jump off a building without hesitation and expect his Turks to take care of everything".
- The Unreveal: When he and Cloud meet in Advent Children, Rufus begins to explain how he escaped his office before Diamond Weapon killed him but Cloud doesn't care and interrupts him before he finishes. The side novellas later explain it.
- Tyrant Takes the Helm: The original President Shinra was no saint by any means, but the minute Rufus takes over, he vows to AVALANCHE in a New Era Speech that he's going to be even worse; whereas his father controlled the world with money and manipulating public opinion to make people like Shinra, Rufus decides that controlling people through fear is a much better option. Although President Shinra destroyed an entire sector of his city, killing untold numbers, just to wipe out a terrorist hideout, whereas Rufus 'died' defending the same city from WEAPON and then resurfaced alive and repentant, if still manipulative, in Advent Children.
- Villain: Exit, Stage Left: After you do enough damage to Rufus in the boss fight with him, he grabs his chopper and flies off, allowing him to continue antagonizing AVALANCHE for the rest of Discs One and Two.
- Villain in a White Suit: His white suit represents his power, influence, and morally unscrupulous nature.
Previously the president of the Shinra Arms Manufacturing Company. The discovery of Mako energy catapulted him to the position of de-facto world dictator. However, once Sephiroth appeared on the scene, he was killed to be replaced by Rufus.
- Asshole Victim: Is murdered by Sephiroth to the despair of no one. Even his own son Rufus, who appears on the scene shortly after the fact, cares more about taking his father's place than his actual death, and no one else in Shinra seems to miss him either.
- Bad Boss: Implied in Denzel's segment in the OVA On the Way to a Smile, since Denzel's parents, both of whom worked in Shinra, were killed when he dropped Sector 7 onto the Slums.
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Cloud is rather annoyed Shinra doesn't recognize him, as he points out he's overseen the graduation of every SOLDIER member and excluding heroes like Sephiroth he can't be bothered to remember every one of them. This is foreshadowing to how Cloud was never a member of SOLDIER to begin with.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: He's constantly using military force and media manipulation to control people and lead Shinra to domination of the world.
- Create Your Own Hero: The entire playable party owes their main motivations to be being abused by President Shinra and his company. An example of this is Barret who was once an advocate for Mako energy and Shinra, but they soon burned down his hometown as revenge for an explosion that the town had nothing to do with. This event sets up Barret to become a staunch anti-Shinra extremist, and all the other party members have their origins tied in someway to Shinra and their activities.
- Dirty Old Man: He can be found in the Honeybee Inn dressed up like a king and doing some roleplay with one of the girls working there.
- The Emperor: Officially he is the owner and CEO of a conglomerate, but make no mistake, in practice, he is this. Wields absolute, unchecked power? Check. Is the boss of a superpower? Check. Is in control of large amounts of the planet? Check. Has expansionist and conquest policies? Check. Commands vast armies? Check. Controls politics? Check. Can hand it all off to his kid? Check.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: As mentioned in Pet the Dog below, several clues hint that he genuinely loves his son, if only in his own way.
- Every Man Has His Price: According to Rufus, he tried to rule the world with money, pouring billions into creating the best weapons and soldiers, or just outright bribing or buying out potential threats to himself or his interests.
- Fat Bastard: He's portly and very unpleasant.
- Faux Affably Evil: He feigns politeness while obviously talking down to the members of AVALANCHE.
- His Name Really Is "Barkeep": In the Japanese version, at least, his first name is actually President (his title is "head of Shin-ra Company", not president; President is his name). Obviously this joke couldn't be translated into English, so the English version just gave him President for a title and made him Last-Name Basis.
- I Was Quite a Looker: Implied to be good looking (or at least powerful enough to be attractive) when he was younger. Enough at least to have landed an attractive wife and at least two mistresses.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Finds himself on the receiving end of this at the end of the player's opening stay in Midgar; once Cloud recognizes the sword used and left behind, Sephiroth firmly takes over as Big Bad for the rest of the game.
- Manipulative Bastard: To the citizens of Midgar. Drop part of upper Midgar onto the Sector 7 slums, blame it on AVALANCHE terrorists, and then send in Shinra to clean up and help the survivors. He always preferred to take the route that would get him what he wanted and would make Shinra look good to the general public.
- One Nation Under Copyright: Midgar was built and financed with Shinra resources, and their monopoly of the Mako the city needs to run makes him the ruler in all but name.
- Pet the Dog: Despite their strained relationship, he also seems to have a soft spot for Rufus according to Before Crisis (where Rufus is put under house arrest rather than being fired or killed for helping AVALANCHE take him down) and On the Way to a Smile (where the presidential passcode of Shinra's HQ turns out to be Rufus' birthdate).
- President Evil: In practice, he's the real ruler of Midgar. You meet the actual Mayor in VII, and he readily admits to this. The mayor of Midgar is essentially a figurehead hostage cooped up inside the Shinra building.
- Really Gets Around: To date, he has three named children all sired by three different women, though two are illegitimate and he only regards Rufus as his possible successor.
- Starter Villain: He's the Big Bad up until the real Big Bad puts a sword in his back.
- The Unfought: Sephiroth kills him after he meets AVALANCHE personally a mere two times; he's one of only three present Shinra executives, the others being Turk Tseng and Reeve, to not have a boss fight attached to him.
- Villain with Good Publicity: He aspires to this, but it gets zigzagged. It seems those living below the plate know better, and those above the plate fall for it because they don't realize how awful conditions in the slums are, or don't think Shinra is at fault.
- Wicked Cultured: Listens to classical music while watching Sector 7's plate collapse and kill off most of the inhabitants of the sector.
Heidegger manages the Shinra Public Safety department, and bungles it up nicely, too. Contrary to the name of his department, in practice Heidegger commands Shinra's military forces.
- Annoying Laugh: At least Rufus thinks so.
- Bad Boss: He takes his anger out on his employees in a very physical manner.
- Beard of Evil: A rather rugged one.
- The Dragon: Was this to President Shinra, before Sephiroth showed up and caused Rufus to take over. Afterward he serves as this to Rufus.
- Dragon Ascendant: He and Scarlet briefly become the heads of Shinra after Diamond Weapon seemingly kills Rufus. It doesn't last long, as AVALANCHE destroys their Humungous Mecha a few real-life hours of gameplay later.
- Evil Laugh: A rather annoying one, as his colleagues (mostly Rufus) frequently tell him.
- Fat Bastard: He's very large and very cruel.
- Ironic Name: He is named after a German philosopher warning against technology, environmental destruction, bioengineering and many other things Shinra does.
- Irony: He's the head of the Public Safety division, yet as the de facto head of Shinra's infantry and SOLDIER, his department causes rampant death and destruction (presumably this is meant to invoke the more euphemistic names that government departments under dictatorships have, such as The Ministry of Truth).
- Out-of-Character Moment: Despite his normally buffoonish nature, during the Sapphire Weapon's attack on Junon, Heidegger performs his duties with unwonted cool professionalism.
- You Are in Command Now: Spin-offs establish he took over SOLDIER when Director Lazard went AWOL. Before Crisis toys with the idea of him taking over the Turks as Veld's leadership comes into question, but ultimately it's Tseng to takes the reins. He also takes control of Shinra period when Rufus seemingly dies towards the end of Disc 2 of the original game, forcing the team to fight him and Scarlet in their Proud Clod mech just prior to Hojo.
Responsible for the Shinra Corporation's Weapons Development department, Scarlet specializes in creating Glass Cannons. She's also the one who carried out the Corel Massacre, maiming Barret in the process and leading him to wage war on Shinra.
- A-Team Firing: Lampshades it when her guards open fire on Barret and Dyne and can't hit anything. Scarlet mocks their poor aim, then knocks one of them aside and takes his gun to show them how it's done.
- Dark Action Girl: A Downplayed Trope in that she isn't that much of a physical fighter, but put her in a giant mech and she will make heads roll.
- Dark Chick: She stands out from the male executives for her pride in her destructive weapons and willingness to take care of business personally.
- Designated Girl Fight: During the attempted execution of AVALANCHE on Disc 2, she suddenly hates Tifa, referring to her as stuck-up and pursuing her when she flees, leading to a minigame where the two have a slapfight.
- Lack of Empathy: She rejoices in murdering AVALANCHE on live television via gas chamber, and takes a moment to slap Tifa and insult her while she's trapped in the chamber.
- Lady in Red: Her dress betrays her nature as a dangerous and violent woman.
- Ms. Fanservice: The low-resolution model reduces the titillation factor, but her dress is cut very low at the front, and is slit to mid-thigh at the side. The remake delivers her in far higher resolution, however, allowing her assets to be displayed a lot better.
- The Smurfette Principle: Shinra's lone female executive.
- You Are in Command Now: She and Heidegger seize Shinra towards the end of the game, and this forces the player to fight them in their giant mech only a few steps away from the second disc's final fight.
The director of the (defunct and defunded) Shinra Space Program. Unlike the other executives, he is almost totally useless, since his department has long been abandoned and Palmer himself is a total buffoon.
- Affably Evil: Sure, he's just as greedy as his peers, and doesn't blink at the destruction of Sector 7, but he's surprisingly friendly with the party when he doesn't recognize them, and doesn't get involved with Shinra's more vile actions. Overall, he doesn't seem that much worse than Reeve.
- Butt-Monkey: He seems to be this for Shinra; he gets no respect at all from anyone. Not that he deserves it.
- Demoted to Extra: He was the least important of the Shinra executives in the original game and is the only one not to appear in any other Compilation titles. This also means it's entirely unknown what happened to him after the original game; he's still alive out there somewhere but no one even mentions him.
- Disney Death: Apparently being hit by a truck was not enough to actually kill him.
- Fat Bastard: The man likes lard in his tea. The "Bastard" part is downplayed in the sense that, while he's working for an evil company, he himself isn't very evil.
- Fat Idiot: He's so pathetic that he's left alive by the end of the game; not even worth killing. He's the only Shinra executive to survive, other than Reeve, who turned good, and Rufus, who got caught in a massive explosion and was thought to have died.
- Fire, Ice, Lightning: During his boss fight, he can shoot Cloud's party with a gun that fire specialized bullets, which are the equivalent of a tier 2 fire, ice, and lightning spell.
- Harmless Villain: Palmer is a joke and everyone knows it. He's ironically the only Shinra executive who fights you without a mech or monsters backing him up, and all he has is a weak mako gun which fires nerfed tier 2 elemental spells.
- Hot-Blooded: He's extremely hyper, to the point where his idle combat pose looks like he's tap dancing.
- The Load: Hasn't been the head of an actual department for two decades and is routinely insulted and ignored during board meetings, and yet is still a part of the Shinra board of directors.
- Made of Iron: He managed to survive being hit by a truck.
- Shout-Out: You know how he narrowly managed to avoid being chopped to bits by the Tiny Bronco after the party's fight against him? Well, aside from the aftermath, that was taken word for word from the demise of that German Mechanic that Indiana Jones was fighting in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
- Stupid Evil: Played for Laughs, he's comical and harmless and barely even qualifies as "evil" for how inept he is.
- This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: After the Shinra Space Program is reduced to a budgetary footnote for 20 years after the failure of the Shinra No. 26 rocket, Palmer gets his moment to shine during the Meteor Crisis when Rufus orders him to Break Out the Museum Piece and repurpose No. 26 into a ballistic missile to destroy Meteor with. It still fails.
- Villain: Exit, Stage Left: Palmer attempts this when you bottom out his HP and he nearly gets sliced and diced by the Tiny Bronco's rudders, but a Shinra truck amusingly runs into him on his way out and bumps him off the screen. He gets better, seeing as he's seen again on Disc Two.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: We don't hear anything about his whereabouts after the failure of Rufus' plan to hit the Meteor with the Shinra No. 26 rocket. By the end of the game, he's probably still alive somewhere.
The head of Shinra's Urban Development bureau, Reeve is the one who discovered how to refine Mako from the Lifestream and designed the Mako Reactors. He is also the pilot of Cait Sith. Following the events of VII, Reeve founds the World Regenesis Organization, dedicated to helping rebuild the planet.
- Anti-Villain: He's the only Shinra executive with a sense of morals or righteousness. The only truly villainous thing he does is kidnap Marlene to use as leverage so AVALANCHE will let Cait Sith tag along after being outed as The Mole; considering what we know of Reeve already and looking at his role in the expanded universe though, she was really in no danger at all.
- The Atoner: Late into VII and into the Compilation, he's trying to make up for the harm he did to the world helping to build Shinra's power base.
- Becoming the Mask: Sort of. He was already sympathetic to the heroes' cause, but didn't trust AVALANCHE at first. He didn't so much change personality-wise, but instead came to the realization that AVALANCHE was operating on the same wavelength he was.
- Big Good: After VII, Reeve is the head of the World Regenesis Organization that's rebuilding the planet after Meteorfall.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: The reason he changes his mission from spying on AVALANCHE to helping them. Reeve can't understand why anyone would go through so much trouble to help people or fight Shinra if there isn't something in it for them. When he finally starts to figure it out, he runs into Good Feels Good.
- Good Feels Good: The final impetus for his HeelFace Turn. After being given a taste of being a hero, Reeve liked it much better than being a corporate pawn.
- HeelFace Turn: After playing as a triple agent between AVALANCHE and Shinra for much of the game, he eventually settles on AVALANCHE.
- Honest Corporate Executive: From what we see of him he was competent and effective at his job. He's the only Shinra executive besides Rufus's old man that is not a boss in this game (Heidegger and Scarlet operate the Proud Clod boss encountered near the end of Disc 2, and the others are all fought on foot.)
- Meaningful Name: Reeve is of Middle English origin and means "bailiff". The medieval reeve of a castle or landholding was an administrator for the king or someone of high position, befitting Reeve's position as one of Shinra's executives. Also, whether coincidentally or not, his name is furthermore homophonous with the Scandinavian verb "riv", meaning "scratch", possibly alluding to the fact that he's the man behind Cait Sith.
- Non-Action Guy: He prefers to operate things behind the scenes and send Cait Sith in to do field operations.
- Redemption Earns Life: The only Shinra executive to repent (as well as the only one besides President Shinra that the player does not engage in a boss fight), and the only good one among them in the first place, is the only one to survive the events of VII.
- Token Good Teammate: Among Shinra's executives, even before he defected to AVALANCHE he was pretty much the only one of them with a conscience.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Reeve is the one who designed the Mako Reactors and the Mako refining process. If he had never made his discovery then Shinra wouldn't have risen to power, probably wouldn't have found Jenova, and the many world-ending events the planet experiences over the next two decades wouldn't have happened.
The head of Shinra's science department, he leaves the company early in the game to pursue his own motives. He is actually the mastermind behind the Jenova Project and, by proxy, Sephiroth and SOLDIER.
- Abusive Parent: He injected Jenova cells into his own son and took him away at birth without letting his mother even hold him. Furthermore, Sephiroth was raised without knowing that Hojo was his father, but he does admit that the man is "a walking mess of complexes".
- Arch-Enemy: He is ultimately one for Vincent Valentine. Hojo stole the woman he loved, impregnated her, experimented on their child to create Sephiroth and then shot Vincent himself to experiment on him as well.
- Barred from the Afterlife: The novel The Girl Who Travels the Planet reveals that, due to his experiments and his lack of humanity, his soul can never enter the Lifestream.
- Big Bad: He's the main antagonist of Dirge of Cerberus, commanding the Tsviets through the body of Weiss.
- Big "NO!": When his digitized spirit is destroyed by Weiss and Nero merging.
- Boss Corridor: The final meeting with Hojo has a long catwalk between the top of the Sister Ray and the control panel where Hojo can be found.
- Brain Uploading: You encounter a copy of his mind in Dirge of Cerberus.
- Card-Carrying Villain: Hojo is very open with being an amoral bastard only interested in science, and it's obvious as soon as you meet him from his appearance and his behavior.
- Climax Boss: When you confront him on the cannon at the end of Disc Two, you discover that he's Sephiroth's father, and therefore is directly responsible for all the hardship the Planet had to endure. He's immediately fought in a three-phase fight, with the last phase possessing some quick and deadly combo attacks.
- Deadpan Snarker: He is particularly snarky with Cloud whenever they meet. In Crisis Core he gets very sarcastic when discussing Hollander, snapping to Genesis "a second-rate hack like Hollander couldn't cure a cold."
- Disc-One Final Boss: Thanks to his role in everything bad that happens to the planet, he becomes the final Shinra executive AVALANCHE has to fight in the original gamenote , at the end of the return to Midgar, which ends the second disc. This also makes Hojo the last boss encountered prior to Shinra's collapse and the player being able to access the game's Very Definitely Final Dungeon, once they are prompted to switch to Disc 3.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: The more his theories are proven right, the more unhinged and fanatical Hojo becomes. It reaches a breaking point when the team has to confront him in a 3-stage boss fight to close out the second disc of play, and he mutates himself as the boss encounter progresses.
- Evil Genius: He may be a monster, but Hojo is very intelligent and perceptive. However, even he admits he's not as smart as he likes to think when it becomes apparent he's underestimated Cloud and Sephiroth.
- Evilutionary Biologist: He believes humanity is mostly useless except for a few promising specimens, and is obsessed with the potential of science to advance society.
- Flunky Boss: The first stage of the boss fight with Hojo has him assisted by two "samples" of two enemies encountered in the Sunken Gelnika. Do not bother killing them because he'll revive them; they die when he moves on to Phase 2.
- For Science!: He just wants to do science for the sake of science. When Cloud calls him out on this towards the end of the game, Hojo admits outright his only desire is to see his path in life vindicated by proving he was right.
- Four Eyes, Zero Soul: He's one of only two characters in the original game to wear glasses, and is one of the most downright evil characters in the setting.
- Godhood Seeker: Dirge of Cerberus retcons he injected Jenova cells into himself in VII to try and make his body strong enough to be a vessel for Omega, and his plan in Dirge of Cerberus is to use Weiss' body for the same. His goal is to become a cosmic being who will travel the stars, but unfortunately he fails as Nero merges with Weiss and they enter Omega destroying Hojo for good.
- Grand Theft Me: He takes over the body of Weiss the Immaculate prior to Dirge of Cerberus.
- Guinea Pig Family: He used both his wife and son as experiments with Jenova.
- Hate Sink: Hojo never approaches anything resembling sympathetic or understandable. He is an arrogant misanthrope who can barely be bothered to acknowledge the existence of others unless he has a use for them and he sees everyone as test subjects to be used for his experiments, including his lover and his son. At no point will players feel anything for Hojo but contempt.
- Hazy Feel Turn: Played with in Before Crisis, he plays with the idea of leaving Shinra to join AVALANCHE, but changes his mind. His initial reason is that he's impressed with Fuhito's experiments, but later decides they aren't good enough to be worth leaving Shinra's facilities to work on.
- The Heavy: Almost every single other antagonist of the Compilation can be traced back to Hojo and his actions — Sephiroth, Deepground, and Elfe were created by his experiments, and Hollander rebelled against Shinra with Genesis because he felt snubbed by Hojo. However, he's never an instigator of the central conflict until Dirge of Cerberus.
- Hidden Depths: When confronted by Genesis, who spouts off yet another verse from LOVELESS, Hojo doesn't just finish it, but knows the verse exactly before referring to it as an ancient epic. Albeit he also dismisses it as drivel immediately afterwards. He also has a strange habit of attracting women through no effort of his own, and is heavily implied to be the leader of Sephiroth's fan club and knows some rather, uh, odd things about him.
- "It" Is Dehumanizing: Hojo rarely uses names when speaking to people, usually referring to them as "subjects" or "specimens". He comments in Crisis Core that unless they prove exceptional enough to warrant the effort, he doesn't care to learn the names of those he experiments on.
- Kavorka Man: He somehow attracts women to him despite looking unremarkable and acting repulsively. In Costa del Sol he's inexplicably surrounded by women on the beach, and we later find out that he more or less stole Lucrecia away from Vincent.
- Labcoat of Science and Medicine: Wears one constantly. Even when relaxing on the beach in Costa del Sol, trying to get a tan(!) he keeps the lab coat on.
- Lack of Empathy: Hojo cares about nothing and no one except for how they can benefit his experiments. Even his son was just another test subject to him.
- Laughing Mad: He is fairly restrained in the original game, until you confront him at the end of Disc 2, during which he falls into hysterical laughter. In Dirge of Cerberus, however, he gives Kefka a run for his money.
- Like Father, Like Son: Dirge of Cerberus reveals that he and his son had the same end goal in mind — merging with an Eldritch Abomination and absorbing the Planet's Lifestream to become a god — and even go about accomplishing it in similar ways.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: Near the end of the first game, he reveals he is Sephiroth's father, something even Sephiroth himself doesn't know. He gets a kick out of the idea that Sephiroth treated him poorly and looked down on him, unaware Hojo was his father.
- Mad Scientist: One of the most famous examples in video games, he is completely amoral and lives to do science no matter the consequence. It really sets the tone for his character when his first scene has him attempting to breed Aerith and Red XIII, rationalizing it as saving two endangered species from extinction and referring to the pair as specimens.
- The Man Behind the Monsters: Aside from Genesis, all of the antagonists of the FF7 universe can be traced back to his experiments on Jenova. And even then, it could easily be argued Genesis never would have become evil if Hojo hadn't shown up Hollander with his own experiments.
- Omnicidal Maniac: Two of the experiments he was involved in nearly resulted in the end of the world, and it is heavily implied that the planet's destruction was exactly what he was hoping for, to prove the superiority of science over nature.
- One-Winged Angel: When the party finally fights him at the end of the first game's second disc, they discover he's injected Jenova cells into himself, causing him to mutate as the fight wears on.
- Only One Name: He's only ever called "Hojo". Given that Hojo could be a given or family name in Japanese, we can't even say which it is.
- Professor Guinea Pig: Eventually injects himself with Jenova cells. Admittedly, he didn't do this as part of a test run; it was only after he proved it was (relatively) safe by injecting it into his wife and son.
- Sequential Boss: When AVALANCHE has to fight him towards the end of the original game, he starts off as a normal dude, but then mutates into a Jenova copy with a trident arm, and then a featureless floating creature, all over three separate phases of the same boss fight.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: He has this dynamic with the rest of Shinra. Everyone in the company is fully aware of how amoral and creepy Hojo is and wants as little to do with him as they can get away with, and he is perfectly fine with that because he wants to be left to his experiments unless he needs something.
- Villainous Breakdown: By the time the party faces him, he's completely lost what sanity he had (thanks in part to the Jenova cells invading his body), and raves that he's an idiot for not realizing the full potential of his experiments and writing them off. Dirge of Cerberus takes it even further.
- Villains Out Shopping: The group can run into him chilling on the beach in Costa Del Sol.Cloud: What are you doing...?
Hojo: It should be obvious. I'm getting a tan.
- Worthy Opponent: After an entire game of calling Cloud moronic, Hojo quickly goes back on it, perhaps showing he has some respect for Cloud's stubbornness (so similar to his own). "Actually, you might be cut out to be a scientist."
- You Killed My Father: He killed Professor Gast, Aerith's father. He also places Aerith and her mother into seven years' worth of inhumane experiments, which eventually resulted in her mother's death while escaping Shinra.
The Department of Administrative Research, unofficially known as the Turks, are Shinra's Black Ops unit. They carry out assassinations, blackmail, and forced recruitment of potential SOLDIER candidates. The group acts as general information experts in the expanded universe, and Before Crisis focuses on the history of their group, introducing more members that serve as the playable cast.
- Affably Evil: Collectively they seem a decent bunch to hang out with, unless you're their target.
- Badass in a Nice Suit: The iconic Turk uniform is a dark blue/black suit that they all wear. There's a partial exception in Reno, who wears his messily with his jacket unbuttoned and shirt untucked.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: Rude and the two "Martial Arts" Turks fight hand-to-hand.
- Blood Knight: Shotgun sees anything from patrol missions or anything outside of participating in dangerous missions as tedious time killing.
- Boss Corridor: The last meeting with the Turks is in Midgar's train tunnels; the player must travel a little bit away from the screen in the first part of the tunnel before the Turks run up behind them.
- Determinator: In Advent Children, Rude and Reno are clearly out of their league against Kadaj's gang. They don't care. They just keep fighting.
- Dual Boss: Two encounters against Reno & Rude can be started in Gongaga and then in a sunken Gelnika ship. Neither of these fights are too tough, and the second one has a bugged Rude who will not attack at all after making a move. Once one is defeated, you have a limited amount of time to take out the other one before he runs off.
- The Dragon: Collectively the entire group is this trope to Rufus, acting as his personal enforcers. Before Crisis establishes backstory that while the Turks are part of the larger Shinra hierarchy, their final loyalty is to Rufus.
- Fighting with Chucks: Nunchaku (Male) fights with a red pair of nunchaku.
- Four Is Death: Played straight in the first game, where they're something of a legitimate threat (until Sephiroth shows up, at least). Subverted in the film, given their HeelFace Turn.
- Foreshadowing: The fact that none of the Turks recognize Cloud despite his proclamation of being an ex-Soldier First Class is one of the early signs that his claims may not actually be true.
- Friendly Enemy: Something that Reno acknowledges in their final encounter in the original game. Their last battle is even optional to boot; you can just choose not to fight them and they back off.
- Goldfish Poop Gang: Reno and Rude quickly devolve into this in the original game, showing up repeatedly to get their butts handed to them and then running off. They only become dangerous again in their last battle when accompanied by (previously thought to be incompetent) Elena.
- Great White Hunter: Shotgun descended from a wealthy family of Hunters from Mideel. Yes, she hunted monsters before she joined the Turks.
- Guns Akimbo: Two Guns from Before Crisis dual wielded two pistols.
- The Gunslinger: Tseng and Gun (Female) fight with handguns.
- HeelFace Turn: The remaining Turks complete this by Advent Children, helping Cloud and the others in their fight against Kadaj, Loz, and Yazoo. However, Before Crisis shows they started their turn by helping civilians evacuate during Meteorfall, with Reno, Rude, Elena and Tseng evacuating separate Sectors before reuniting with the remaining Turks to complete their rescue efforts.
- Hello, [Insert Name Here]: The Before Crisis Turks all have names assigned by the player and have no canon names. The exception is "Shuriken (Female)", who was named Cissnei for her Crisis Core role. It is also noted that Cissnei isn't her real name.
- Hero of Another Story: Before Crisis serves to reveal the Turks saved the world from a threat never before spoken of — Zirconiade.
- I Owe You My Life: Before Crisis reveals that after Veld and the player Turks betrayed the company and went rogue, Scarlet ordered the last three members loyal to Shinra — Tseng, Reno and Rude — exterminated and the Turks shut down. Rufus intervened to keep the group alive, demanding their absolute loyalty to him in exchange.
- Katanas Are Just Better: Katana (Male) fights with katana.
- Knife Nut: Knife (Female) fights with small throwing knives.
- Leitmotif: The iconic Turk theme accompanies them in all their appearances.
- A Million Is a Statistic: The effect of Reno and the Turks following through with the command to drop the Sector 7 plate, killing thousands of people, has noticeably less impact on the characters (and the fans) than Sephiroth impaling Aerith. Although the Avalanche members can't claim to be much better, as they've got blood on their hands too (the Reactors bombings).
- Private Military Contractors: As revealed in Before Crisis, many if not all of the members of the Turks consist of reputable warriors, mercenaries, criminals, and Shinra-raised soldiers recruited from various backgrounds by the Shinra corporation to serve as fighters to protect its interests.
- Punch Clock Villains: To the point that they even agree to help the heroes when they are found off-duty in Wutai. They'll still commit atrocities when ordered to by their boss.
- Put on a Bus: The Before Crisis Turks including former commander Veld all leave the company and go their separate ways after the game's end. The group returns for a brief cameo in On The Way to a Smile, with Veld getting a supporting role, but otherwise they've not been heard from again.
- Quirky Mini Boss Squad: At their worst, they are comic relief, usually too silly to be a real threat, and all wear the same uniform. At their best, they are a genuinely threatening organization responsible for espionage, assassinations and mass-murder (especially the last time you fight them in the original game, which can be a difficult fight depending on how you play it).
- Recurring Boss: When you play the original Final Fantasy VII, AVALANCHE has to engage a few members of the Turks sans Tseng at least twice through the game. The first instance is with Reno in the opening stages when you see him for the second time at the Sector 7 pillar, and the other required fight is with Rude in Rocket Town on Disc 2. You can skip out on the Reno/Rude duels by staying out of the areas where you run into them, and doing a lengthy sidequest allows AVALANCHE to turn down a final encounter at the end of Disc 2 (otherwise, you have to deal with all the Turk members outside of Tseng in Midgar in a 3-on-3 boss fight, and unlike the other fights, this one can be frustrating and painful, especially if you try to steal equipment they have).
- Resignations Not Accepted: Due to the nature of their job they're privy to quite a few company secrets, so any Turk that resigns is considered a security risk.
- Reformed Criminal: Two Guns was formerly a bodyguard of Don Corneo. Rod was formerly in a bike gang and tried to steal a bike from the Shinra headquarters garage which led him to being caught, but Veld offered him a position in the Turks.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: If you're given the option of refusing the final fight with them in Midgar and take said option, Reno and Rude won't push it, noting Shinra is ancient history. They'll say their goodbyes, turn around, and leave.
- Shotguns Are Just Better: Shotgun (Female) fights with shotguns.
- Simple Staff: Reno and Rod (Male) fight with short metal rods.
- Skippable Boss: The only times they have to be fought is the first Reno fight and the fight with Rude at Rocket Town. All others can be skipped or those areas passed over. Even the final confrontation is skippable if you've completed the Wutai quest.
- Spell My Name with an "S": The official Romanizations [in Japan] of Elena's and Reno's names were, once upon a time, "Yrena" and "Leno" [specifically in the Official Establishment File artbook].
- The Atoner: The remaining Turks become this as of Advent Children.
- Throw Down the Bomblet: Elena and the Legendary Turk fight with thrown explosives.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: It was the player character in Before Crisis who requested the investigation of the Nibelheim reactor thus summoned Sephiroth to his birthplace.
- Villain: Exit, Stage Left: In all of the Turk fights except for the Rude battle in Rocket Town, the Turk(s) you are fighting will turn tail and run off once you deplete their health bar; in the Reno/Rude fights, you then have a limited time to deplete the other's health before he leaves on his own and deny you his drop item, and in the 3-on-3 battle towards the end of the game, once one Turk runs out of life, they all run away. This is also when they pull the plug on doing Shinra's dirty work; If you decline to fight them, they no longer care and leave on their own.
- Weapon of Choice: Each Turk has a particular weapon they specialize in.
- Wolfpack Boss: The last fight with the Turks the player has the ability to play is a 3-vs-3 fight in Midgar at the end of Disc 2 and towards the end of the game. This fight brings out recurring bosses Reno and Rude plus Elena, and unlike the other Turk fights, this one has a decent to tough challenge to it since the Turks fight as a team, they now sport 5-digit health bars each, Elena can use Confusion, and each Turk can now absorb a specific element and be healed by it. If the player did the Wutai side-quest, they'll be given the option of skipping this boss fight altogether, though the Turks do have strong items to steal if the player elects to go forward with the boss fight.
- Characterization Marches On: His appearance at the attack on Sector 7's plate had him laugh at the coming destruction and slap Aerith in the face mercilessly, both at odds with his depictions in the Compilation (where he's shown as professional but not cruel). The latter was at least addressed in the Compilation by a novella, but the first remains unaddressed.
- Childhood Friend Romance: For Aerith, sort of. They were never friends and he's older than her by several years, but he was one of the few people Aerith knew when she was a child, and he's had an unrequited thing for her all the time since.
- Dub-Induced Plot Hole: The North American version of the game treats the aftermath of his ill-fated encounter with Sephiroth in the Temple of the Ancients as being fatal. In the original Japanese version, he survives but is laid up recovering for the rest of the game, hence why he doesn't show up in Discs 3 and 4. This caused some natural confusion for members of the North American audience when he returns with the rest of the Turks in Advent Children.
- The Gunslinger: While he doesn't show it off in the original game, appearances in the Compilation give him handguns as his preferred weapon.
- No Pronunciation Guide: Its proper pronunciation rhymes with "sung", but that's not how you're likely to say the first time. Lampshaded in Crisis Core when Zack finds a camera with Tseng's name on it, and thanks to the odd spelling doesn't realize who it belongs to; he then wonders how one pronounces the name.
- Ship Tease: With Elena. Rude and Reno directly state she likes him, and he later asks her to dinner, but nothing is known to come of it.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Other media has spelled his name as Zheng or Zeng, the latter being an alternate way of spelling Tseng.
- The Unfought: At no point does the party ever actually engage Tseng, the leader of the Turks, in combat. He can, however, be fought in the Training Mode in Before Crisis.
- A Sinister Clue: Much like Sephiroth, Reno is left-handed, since that's the hand he holds his stun baton in (he also wears a watch on his right hand.) In-game this is a literal clue as you can Steal the Tough Ring accessory from him, last seen in flashback equipped by...Sephiroth.
- Characterization Marches On:
- Reno was a competent Deadpan Snarker in the original game. In Advent Children, he became the Plucky Comic Relief. There have been reports, though, that the Deadpan Snarker version of him was an alteration of the translation and that he was supposed to have been comical in the original Japanese.
- According to this, Reno's personality in the JP version of FF7 was in the middle between the localization (which lost much of his charm) and the Compilation (which played up his silliness). He was playful and laidback but still took his job seriously (with his career as a Turk being just a job as far as he cares).
- Reno dropping the plate on Sector 7, killing countless innocent people (and joking about it as he does so) is sharply out of line with his characterization even just later on in the original game, let alone in the expanded universe.
- Reno was a competent Deadpan Snarker in the original game. In Advent Children, he became the Plucky Comic Relief. There have been reports, though, that the Deadpan Snarker version of him was an alteration of the translation and that he was supposed to have been comical in the original Japanese.
- Deadpan Snarker: Reno is very sarcastic and snarky.
- Evil Redhead: Reno, but only in the original game. In other appearances, he's more an Anti-Villain than straight evil.
- Fiery Redhead: Reno could be considered a male example, being very spry and talkative.
- Hair Color Dissonance: His official artwork, in-game battle model, and media beyond the original game depict him with having bright red hair while his overworld model gives him a less saturated color more similar to brown.
- Karma Houdini: Reno never suffers the consequences for setting off the bomb which destroyed Sector 7 (an act similar to burning down a house to kill one mosquito). Hell, Barret never even remarks about this whenever he meets Reno in person.
- No Pronunciation Guide: "Reno" should rhyme with Leno, based on its romaji. You're more likely to pronounce it rhyming with the Nevada city.
- Simple Staff: His weapon is a metal baton.
- The Atoner: He and Rude become this in Advent Children, and Rude suggests this is true for the rest of the surviving Turks as well.
- Ambiguously Brown: Rude, though described by Word of God as somewhat resembling a person of South American descent rather than African descent.
- All Love Is Unrequited: He has a crush on Tifa, who is both unaware and uninterested. Hilariously if you have Tifa in your party while fighting the Turks, Rude tries to avoid attacking her.
- Bald of Evil: Rude hasn't got a hair on his head.
- Barefisted Monk: He beats you up with his bare hands.
- Cool Shades: Rude is always shown with his sunglasses. In Advent Children we briefly see his eyes when they fall off and Reno steps on them; after a look of horror from Rude, he stands up and pulls a spare pair from his pocket.
- Flunky Boss: The fight with Rude in Rocket Town has him standing behind two Attack Squad soldiers.
- Shock and Awe: When Rude is fought in Rocket Town and Midgar, he can use an electric attack called Grand Spark.
- The Atoner: Like Reno, Rude becomes this is Advent Children. However this detail is only made clear in the Complete version of the film where the two talk about the Turks' previous role as the "obliterators" of the world and how they have a lot they need to atone for while they're still alive.
- Voiced by: Megumi Toyoguchi (Japanese), Bettina Bush (English)
- Damsel in Distress: Elena during the Wutai section of the game alongside Yuffie.
- Dark Action Girl: Elena seems to be the least competent member of the Turks. However, in the one battle in which you fight her, she turns out to have more HP than Reno or Rude (said HP can't be scanned), is able to defend herself rather well and can inflict Confusion on your characters.
- Dark Chick: Elena is the female of the four. Averted with the Compilation establishing there were more female Turks in the past.
- Minion with an F in Evil: Elena is... spectacularly bad at her job sometimes. Her career highlights include blabbing sensitive intel to the enemy instead of just Evil Gloating, getting kidnapped by a Z-grade crime boss, and (potentially) just walking away from a climactic clash with the heroes because she's just not feeling it. Even if she manages to punch Cloud unconscious in Icicle Inn, her immediate response is feeling regretful about it and just leaving him behind to recover rather than apprehending him.
- New Meat: With the Turks being bled down to just Tseng, Rude, and Reno after Before Crisis, Elena is recruited early in Final Fantasy VII to bolster their numbers. And boy does it show.
- Playing with Fire: The one time Elena is fought, she can use a fire attack on the team.
- Sibling Rivalry: Before Crisis reveals that Elena's older sister was a Turk, and Elena resented her for outperforming her; she refused to join the Turks while her sister was a member. She joined after her sister retired along with many other Turks from that game, following their defeat of Zirconiade and decision to follow Veld's lead.
- Throw Down the Bomblet: Her weapon is thrown explosives.
- Women Are Wiser: While the original game leans heavily into her being a bumbling new recruit, she's still significantly smarter and more mature than Rude and Reno generally are.
- Voiced by: Asumi Nakada (Japanese), Carrie Savage (English)
- All Love Is Unrequited: Its implied that she falls for Zack sometime during the story. By the time she met him however, Zack had already met Aerith, who he formed a instant connection with and started dating shortly after.
- Ascended Extra: "Shuriken (female)" was just one of several generic Turks the player could choose to play as in Before Crisis. Crisis Core gave Cissnei an actual name and a prominent story role.
- Canon Name: Averted. Cissnei straight up tells Zack that "Cissnei" is not her real name. Meaning whatever the player named her in Before Crisis is just as valid as her Crisis Core codename.
- Fuuma Shuriken: Cissnei fights with an oversized red shuriken.
- The Paranoiac: Apparently Cissnei, or otherwise known as Shuriken in Before Crisis, thought everyone was after her due to being raised in the Turks from childhood. Her training encouraged this mindset and it took her colleagues helping her to abandon it.
- Pet the Dog: She looks the other way so Zack can escape being a test subject with Cloud (the latter of whom is visibly suffering from severe Mako addiction), lies to Tseng to give them a better chance of getting away, and even gives him the keys to a motorcycle (complete with sidecar, so Cloud won't be at risk of falling off in his catatonic state).
- Voiced by: Shinya Ohwada (Japanese), Sterling Young (English)
A Shinra scientist working on the Jenova Project years ago, he and Hojo competed to have the superior specimen in order to receive funding to continue their respective research. When Hojo's results were superior, Hollander was quietly forgotten by Shinra's executives and faded into the background, until Genesis was wounded and he seized a chance for vengeance against Hojo.
- Always Someone Better: Hojo is this to him.
- Beard of Evil: Has a full bushy beard with matching mustache and sideburns.
- Best Served Cold: The official series timeline places the Jenova Project as occurring 20 years before Crisis Core. Hollander's been waiting a long time to get back at Hojo for outdoing him
- Breath Weapon: Deadly Breath.
- Dirty Coward: He always flees from danger and is visibly intimidated by Shinra's forces. He only fights Zack near the end of the game because he's cornered, and is so degraded that he has no choice but to fight for the one hope he has of saving his own life.
- Evil Genius: Though outdone by Hojo in both regards, he's still a brilliant scientist and is absolutely devoid of morals. His one advantage is that he's relatively sane compared to Hojo.
- Evil Is Not a Toy: His attempts to make Genesis his Unwitting Pawn backfire when Genesis gets tired of his failure to produce a cure and attempts to kill him. He later does so again off-screen, forcing Hollander to inject himself with Genesis's cells to save his own life, and he experiences the same debilitating health as Genesis does for it.
- Evil Is Petty: He convinces Genesis to rebel against Shinra and take a large part of SOLDIER with them, and has Genesis wage war on Shinra by promising him a cure for his genetic degradation. Why? To show up Hojo and SOLDIER and prove his specimens are superior.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Compared to Hojo's high-pitched voice, Hollander is deep and gravelly.
- For Science!: See Evil Is Petty. He particularly wants to prove his science is better than Hojo's.
- Humanoid Abomination: He transforms into a more monstrous humanoid form thanks to the Genesis cells he's injected himself with.
- Hyperspace Arsenal: His "Dimension Missile" cinematic attack has him pull a missile larger than he is out of his satchel and hurl it at Zack.
- The Man Behind the Man: He's the real force behind Genesis's army, and the one who convinced Genesis to go against Shinra.
- The Man Behind the Monsters: The Genesis Copies are his work, as are Genesis and Angeal.
- Mook Maker: Can spawn monsters to aid him in battle.
- Only One Name: As with Hojo, it's hard to even say if it's his first or last name.
- Poisonous Person: Infects Zack with poison and other status ailments.
- Power Gives You Wings: He sprouts a small black wing over his shoulder when he becomes a Genesis Copy.
- Trademark Favorite Food: He's a fan of Banora White juice, even wearing a shirt depicting the logo under his lab coat.
The former head of Shinra's science department, he led the expedition that unearthed Jenova. Believing her to be the remains of a Cetra, he began the Jenova Project to try and imbue a normal human with her abilities. When he realized what Jenova really was though, he left Shinra to continue studying the Cetra with Ifalna; eventually, the two of them gave birth to Aerith.
- All There in the Manual: His last name is never given in the game proper, and isn't revealed until years later in the 10th Anniversary Ultimania.
- Always Someone Better: He's this to Hojo; most in Shinra are open in their consideration that as brilliant as Hojo is, he's nothing compared to Gast.
- Disappeared Dad: Aerith's. Gast was murdered by Shinra soldiers under Hojo's command when his daughter was twenty days old.
- For Science!: His goal seemed to be a genuine understanding of the Cetra.
- Mad Scientist: Edged towards it studying Jenova; when he realized what she was he backed off.
- Meaningful Name: During the 1930s, there was a german scientist called Professor Herman Wirth, who searched for an ancient civilization and a "mother goddess" on the north pole. Wirth is derived from the German word Wirt, meaning bartender. Gast is a german word meaning guest, but could also refer to a customer of a Wirt/bartender. Wirth and Gast also look very similar.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: When he found out from Ifalna that Jenova was an Eldritch Abomination, Gast left Shinra.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: His discovery of Jenova would lead to the creation of SOLDIER, Sephiroth, and Genesis. Though Gast left the company, it was too late to undo his discoveries.
A Shinra scientist working on the Jenova Project, she was Hojo's lover and consented to use their unborn child as an experiment for the Project. Horrified by visions of what her child would become, she sealed herself in a cave, ashamed of her role in Shinra's rise to power.
- Abusive Parents: Dirge of Cerberus makes it completely clear that she fully consented to injecting Jenova cells into her unborn child.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Played with. Vincent fell in love with her and she cared for him too, but Lucrecia was guilty over being involved with the experiment that killed his father and pushed herself away from him and into Hojo's arms.
- And I Must Scream: She's sealed herself in a cocoon of crystallized Mako out of guilt for her actions, and is unable to die. Whether she can escape or not is unknown, but she doesn't want to as her imprisonment was self-imposed.
- Apologises a Lot: In Dirge of Cerberus, nearly every flashback Vincent has of her involves her apologizing for something. Considering the things she's done, it's not hard to understand why.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: She's soft-spoken, amiable, and Apologizes a Lot... but she constantly hurts Vincent, and she experimented on her own child.
- Death Seeker: She wants to die, but thanks to Hojo's experiments cannot. So she decided to do the next "best" thing: creating crystallized Mako to encase herself in within a cave.
- Horrible Judge of Character: Everyone who knew Hojo knew he was a scumbag of the highest order, yet Lucrecia was his lover.
- Hot Scientist: She's in the ranking for one of the most beautiful scientists Final Fantasy has produced.
- I Did What I Had to Do: Her justification for implanting the Protomateria into Vincent; it was the only way to save his life.
- It's All My Fault: She has this attitude... and she's right. Her carelessness gets Grimoire Valentine killed, her actions get Vincent killed and experimented on, and she abuses her own child in utero by injecting him with Jenova cells - which kicks off the whole mess from Nibelheim onwards.
- Labcoat of Science and Medicine: Her white lab coat for a scientist.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: A major factor in understanding her actions in Dirge of Cerberus is that her son is Sephiroth. This gives away a reveal from Final Fantasy VII that Hojo is Sephiroth's father.
- My God, What Have I Done?: She was horrified when a vision showed her what her child with Hojo would become.
- No Accounting for Taste: Seriously, what did she ever see in Hojo? Flashbacks in Dirge of Cerberus show he was always a scumbag who treated Lucrecia as horribly as everyone else he interacts with, including insulting and mocking her to her face and bossing her around as a subordinate. Why she married him is a total mystery.
- Strong Family Resemblance: She has very similar hair and facial features to her son.
- They Called Me Mad!: A more benign version. Her theories about Omega and Chaos were ridiculed and seen as myth, but they turned out to be right.
- Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Though it's ambiguous if they actually wed, she fits this trope with Hojo; he looks rather unpleasant, Lucrecia is gorgeous.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Thanks to Dirge of Cerberus, the "unwitting" part is now debatable, but she basically doomed the planet the second she agreed to have a child with Hojo. On a smaller scale, she's also responsible for most of the misfortune Vincent forced to suffer in his life either directly or indirectly.
- Who Wants to Live Forever?: Hojo's experiments made her immortal, but having to live with the guilt of what she's done put a damper on the idea.