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Characters / NieR

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A list of characters from NieR, both the Gestalt and Replicant versions, and their associated tropes. For a list of characters from NieR: Automata, click here. For a list of characters from NieR Re[in]carnation, click here.

Spoilers ahead

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    Nier (both) 
The eponymous hero and only playable character of the game. Between the Japanese and English releases, there are two separate renditions of him - 'Brother' Nier and 'Father' Nier. Although they're very similar, there are some notable differences between them.

Tropes associated with both versions of Nier:

  • Berserk Button: Be a Shade; a sidequest even has him mention that he doesn't care if a Shade is just minding its own business and not attacking, he'll still cut it down.
  • Casting a Shadow: Nier's magic tends to be focused around darkness.
  • Cessation of Existence: Ending D. Played with in Ending E, which combines most of D but allows a new him that does not know Kainé or the others to be made. The remake's version of Ending E outrights brings him Back from the Dead.
  • Character Title: He's the titular character.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Has a habit of helping out anyone who needs him to earn some money. He sort of insists he doesn't do this, saying it's all for Yonah, but Weiss comments otherwise. There wasn't any reward for finding the brothers' mother, or helping Emil.
  • Curious Qualms of Conscience: Though for the most part he's unapologetically ruthless in killing Shades there are a few instances where his actions give him pause, even prior to The Reveal:
    • He's visibly unsettled when Gideon begins gloating over Beepy's damaged body (right after Nier defeated him and killed Kalil), and tries to calm him down. His conversation with Weiss afterwards implies that he's not proud of his role in enabling Gideon's madness.
    • In a sidequest, he seeks out a little Shade that's infiltrated his village and kills it. Once again, he takes no pride in having done so, likely because a kid in his village was covering for it (and the Shade will not attack you).
    • He hesitates before delivering the killing blow to the Shadowlord, his own original incarnation and Gestalt.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: He's suffered a lot of hardships due to the sickness and/or death of family members, and the steps he's had to take to eke out a living.
  • Declaration of Protection: Although his overriding desire is to do so at whatever cost, it's eventually revealed to have gotten rather out of hand.
  • Destructive Saviour: Nier blindly crashes forward into battle, heedless of any consequences so long as he gets Yonah back. By the end, he's pretty much screwed the entire human race thanks to his efforts.
  • Determinator: Not even getting impaled multiple times will stop this guy trying to defend his loved ones.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Of Route E, initially the game starts off the same way Act 1 begins, but then when you defeat Hook the entirety of the events of the playthrough are revealed to be a dream Kainé is having and the rest of the route progresses with Kainé as the main protagonist.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: As weird as it sounds, a different Nier finally gets to be happy with Kainé in Ending E. This is only in supplementary material however, they didn't have the time to implement it in-game (and it would have had the added bonus that you could reuse the file name that you had previously consigned to be lost forever). The remaster of Replicant adds it fully as an ending, with the major difference that the Nier who's restored is the same one who originally erased himself.
  • Empowered Badass Normal: He was a self-trained warrior able to use different kinds of weapons to kick ass and take names even before gaining magic from Weiss.
  • Expy: Of Caim. Both are dedicated to protecting their sisters, both have an extreme hatred for their enemy that is at least somewhat understandable, but gets taken way too goddamn far, and both are completely impossible to reason with. However, unlike Caim, Nier isn't a complete bloodthirsty psychopath and at the very least has good intentions, and actually does care about his traveling companions, while Caim... doesn't, Angelus aside. They still both murder children though, even if unknowingly in Nier's case.
  • Fantastic Racism: Unintentional on his part but he is insanely violent towards the Shades even before they took Yonah, since they are monsters in his eyes despite hints that some of them are pacifistic (two sidequests have Shades never attacking him, and one of them even befriended a kid) and intelligent creatures, because he doesn't care to learn about them.
  • Good Is Not Nice: In a harsh world, there's little time to be nice. He does want to help people even though he has his own objective but he will voice his displeasure about it. His crusade against the Shades, while done in the interest of saving Yonah, also has spiteful undertones as he scapegoats them for his problems.
  • Heel Realization: Hinted at occasionally. Made especially apparent after Emil sacrifices himself when he lets Kainé kick the crap out of him.
    Weiss (On Gideon): Revenge is a fool's errand.
    Nier: ...I know.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: Which arguably makes the Character Title kinda unnecessary.
  • Heroic BSoD: Rather subtly, but after Emil's sacrifice he allows Kainé to beat the hell out of him because he's finally realized just how badly he screwed up and how many of his friends have died.
  • Heroic Suicide: In Ending D.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: The Shadowlord stabs him in the left shoulder with a tentacle. Nier shrugs it off and keeps fighting until Noir tries to kill Weiss and Nier takes the bullet, stabbed through the chest by a large spike of solid blood. Nier, being Made of Iron, survives, but is left too injured to keep fighting. And even then, Nier managed to get back on his feet.
  • Indy Ploy: Usually charges in without any plan other than 'kill the enemy', much to Weiss's exasperation. However, he always manages to come up with a solution at the last minute, and gets pretty resourceful at using his magic too.
  • Last Kiss: With the Shade-possessed and already dying Kainé in Ending C. Was also their First Kiss.
  • Made of Iron: Halfway through the game he gets electrocuted and impaled twice by a massive blade, before finally being put out of combat.
  • Magnetic Hero: He's very popular in his village and everyone he meets is willing to help him out due to his sincere and righteous attitude. Even the fiercely independent Kainé and cantankerous Weiss can't stay away from him.
  • May–December Romance: Heavily downplayed with Kainé. 'Father' Nier is much older than her and a widower. Because of this, the only time he shows any visible romantic attraction towards Kainé is in Ending C, when he gives her their First and Last Kiss upon mercy killing her. 'Brother' Nier is only a year younger than Kainé, but the events of Ending E create a complicated situation where he comes back from non-existence as a 16 year old boy. By than Kainé is technically a 25 year old woman, with a mind and body of a 20 year old thanks to being petrified by Emil before the Time Skip.
  • Mike Nelson, Destroyer of Worlds: He ruins a lot of plans in order to protect Yonah. A few of them could be considered evil, and most of them vital for one species.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: When it comes to Shades, there's never any other option considered. Helps that virtually all of them suffer a Cruel and Unusual Death.
  • Naked on Revival: When Kainé resurrects him in Ending E, Nier is reborn without clothes.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Killing the Shadowlord was a big no-no in the grand scheme of things, as their death winds up leading both Replicants and Gestalts to their eventual extinction (save for Emil, who wasn't either), resulting in the end of mankind and kicking off a large part of NieR: Automata's plot as the androids created to serve humanity try to find new raison d'être. By the time of that game, he was remembered as "The Destroyer", the man who destroyed the world.
  • Off Hand Back Hand: You know he's taken a few badass levels when a Shade appears behind him and he stabs it in the face without looking!
  • The Power of Friendship: After assembling his Ragtag Bunch of Misfits, Nier seems to broaden his horizons and learn to care about something other than Yonah, until eventually he's practically running on this.
  • Pretty in Mink: His outfit is lined with fur, including a fur collar and boots in Replicant, which is probably for practical purposes since he's nearly always travelling.
  • Ret-Gone: Ending D. To the extent that everybody else forgets he ever existed as well, and your save files are all deleted! The new Nier from Grimoire Nier's version of Ending E isn't remembered by Kainé, nor does he remember her. This is averted in the Replicant remake's Ending E, where Kainé literally restores Nier to existence. Due to this, Nier never forgot Kainé and Kainé and Emil regained their memories. Weiss never forgot Nier, either.
  • Significant Birth Date: He is a Well-Intentioned Extremist willing to commit any atrocity for what he believes is right. Fittingly, his birthday is September 11th.
  • Staking the Loved One: When he is forced to kill a possessed Kainé on Ending C.
  • Sticks to the Back: No matter the size or weight of Nier's equipped weapon, he can easily reach around and attach it to something on his back with an audible clink. Even more absurd in Gestalt, where the only thing he wears across his back is a few straps that hold his shoulder guard in place.
  • Taking the Bullet: Almost gets himself killed defending Weiss.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: He and the Shadowlord are iterations of the same person.
  • Took a Level in Badass: After the timeskip his abilities have increased greatly, so that he can now use various weapons and stronger magic. More obvious in Replicant since Nier has grown into a man.
  • Too Many Belts: 'Father' Nier has no fewer than seven, whereas 'Brother' Nier has maybe three.
  • The Unfettered: He's gonna save Yonah no matter what. Except if someone needs pink flowers, he'll take a break.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Between him and Kainé, particularly after the time skip. It's prevalent in Replicant but downplayed considerably in Gestalt where Nier is much older than her and a widower to boot.
  • Unwanted Harem: Creators compared his friends to one of these, joking that every member of the band save for Weiss fell in love with him at some point. However, from Nier's perspective, it's not so much "unwanted" as "doesn't realize it exists".
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: A major plot twist in the late game is that his quest over the game to save Yonah will ultimately lead to the extinction of the human race, as the Gestalts all go berserk without the Shadowlord to keep them calm, and all the Replicants will get the Black Scrawl disease as a result, until every last one of them dies with no hope of replacement or revival within a generation. Whoops.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: The man called Nier will kill anything that stands in his way to save Yonah. Even if his enemies show signs of intelligence.

    'Brother' Nier
Click here to see him grown up 
Reclaimer of What Was Lost

"I have something to defend. I have a reason to live! Shadowlord... You..."
Voiced by: Nobuhiko Okamoto (pre-timeskip) & Koji Yusa (post-timeskip) (JP), Zach Aguilar (pre-timeskip) & Ray Chase (post-timeskip) (EN)

Main character of Replicant, a driven young man forced to raise his sister Yonah after being orphaned. He generally keeps a sunny and optimistic outlook on life, even to a foolish extent considering the grim realities staring him in the face. He feels compelled to help people in need and repay any favors he is given, believing that doing so will make the world a better place.

After he crosses the Despair Event Horizon one too many times, he snaps. Following the Time Skip, he has grown into a ruthless Blood Knight who will kill as many Shades as it takes to rescue Yonah. Despite this, some traces of his former kindness still remain.

  • Ambiguous Disorder: Nier's obsession with saving Yonah is indicated to have been born a pathologic fear from being left all alone from having lost his parents at an early age. He recalls that when his father and mother died, he was able to reconcile with still having family remaining, but the thought of losing even Yonah is too much for him to bear. This is what most likely led to him having a "sister complex" for her.
  • Anime Hair: Prior to the timeskip, he sports a couple of large, gravity-defying spikes. It's toned down to more realistic levels with the remaster of Replicant.
  • Big Brother Instinct: His devotion to his sister is all kinds of sweet, particularly in their younger years, Act I in the game and even "The Red and The Black" novella seem to emphasize this. In comparison to the sibling duo in Drakengard, Nier seems to have a strong "familial love" for Yonah and nothing romantic or sexual, as Weiss's voice actor, Hiroki Yasumoto, doesn't seem to think that Nier has any romantic/sexual feelings toward Yonah. Nier only views her as just a "sister" according to the relationship charts. He is only obsessed with her due to his pathologic fear from being left all alone with having no family left except for his sister. (as stated up above)
  • Bishounen: Heck, in the backstory he's outright said to have a "womanly face". Nier even had very long hair before tying it up, which made him look even more effeminate.
  • Despair Event Horizon: He crosses it at some point before the beginning of the game, which leads to drastic measures and more than a little insanity. Then he crosses it again at the end of Act 1.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Nier's expression is often completely blank even as he carves up giant Shades left and right. It's pretty disturbing how such a nice boy can stand completely still and calm while getting showered with copious amounts of enemy blood. Maybe because his mind is fixed on other things...
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: After five years he lets his hair down and most likely cuts his hair making it shorter, which makes him look older and more rugged.
  • Expy: After the timeskip, he starts picking up some of Caim's mannerisms from Drakengard. Unlike Caim, however, Nier does not let his anger consume him due to having True Companions he actually cares about.
    • His backstory with being forced to fend for himself at a young age, being molested, culminating with him secretly killing his molester is remarkably similar to Guts's backstory from Berserk. His motives are also to protect an ailing loved one, and results in meeting True Companions from different walks of life along the way.
  • He Is All Grown Up: Just look at how much he's changed during the Time Skip! Kainé certainly notices when they're reunited.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Whored himself out to older men (and possibly older women) in the past in order to get money for Yonah's medicine. Noteworthy to add is that he only did it for the money, but was forced to have sex. This may have also something to do with the fact that Nier looks like a girl with how effeminate he looks. (the man in Seafront pretty much suggests this)
  • Katanas Are Just Better: His default weapon, the Nameless Blade resembles a katana, probably since it's more suited to his slender frame. He can also obtain Faith, an actual katana.
  • Kid Hero: He's only sixteen at the beginning of the game.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: As specified, he isn't fighting the legions of darkness for something as feeble as "justice". He's fighting for his adorable little sister, and you had better not get in his way.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Once he grows up. Gives him an advantage since it doesn't really work with older Nier. It's not quite clear how his appearance can be so well-maintained given the After the End setting, but try not to think about it too much. Saito Yosuke said that Nier's young adult form was designed to be the standard "good-looking do-gooder" protagonist.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: Gets pretty protective when he thinks Yonah has a boyfriend.
  • Oblivious to Love: He's far too busy thinking about saving Yonah, finding a cure for the Black Scrawl, and revenge to even begin to consider Kainé in a romantic light. Hiroki Yasumoto (Grimoire Weiss' voice actor) revealed some official relationship charts for Replicant ver 1.22, which show that, at one point, every major character besides Weiss has a romantic interest in Nier, whereas he himself during Routes A/B views them all platonically including Kainé. However, it is also confirmed by Yasumoto (with the chart) that later on Nier developed romantic feelings toward Kainé in Routes C/D and that they became an official couple after Ending E. Albeit, this only applies to Replicant ver 1.22 and does not apply to the original games.
  • Parental Abandonment: Both his parents died within a few years of each other. In the case of their mother, it's implied she died and he buried her. Or rather, the original Nier did, likely because of WCS.
  • Recurring Element: A young man who gradually loses himself to hatred due to the traumatic loss of a loved one, much like Caim, Gideon, and 9S.
  • Stepford Smiler: A major difference between Brother Nier and Father Nier is that the former works as hard as he can to keep up a friendly demeanor for Yonah and those around him, believing it to be better to stay positive for them. Various moments show that he is more troubled than he lets on. For example; in the Drama CD, when the original Yonah asks about their mother and why the original Nier is digging, he tells her it's just trash and that their mom had to go away for a bit, but as soon as Yonah steps away he begins to crack, the implication being that he was burying their mother, while telling himself to keep it together for Yonah.
  • Unfriendly Fire: One of the short stories in Grimoire Nier implies that he killed a man who molested him in the midst of a Shade hunt. He's rather disturbed that killing humans and killing Shades felt the same.

    'Father' Nier
"You want me to understand your sadness? You think I'm gonna sympathize with you? I swore to protect my daughter and my friends. If someone puts them in danger, they must stand aside or be cut down! Come on! Let's go!"
Voiced by: Jamieson Price (EN), Kenichiro Matsuda (JP, 1.22)

The main character of Gestalt and Yonah's father. In contrast to his younger counterpart, 'Father Nier''s optimism has been steadily eroded over time to the point where he is achingly aware of how bad the state of the world is, and how pointless his actions are in the bigger picture. Having lost his wife some time ago, his one anchor of sanity is the innocent Yonah, for whom he loves dearly and devotes his entire life to protecting.

Like 'Brother' Nier, he snaps after Yonah is taken from him, becoming a vengeful Blood Knight whose goal is to murder every Shade in existence.

  • American Kirby Is Hardcore: Was given an almost complete makeover to cater to the Westnote  including making him older, grittier, more muscular and less altruistic.
  • Anti-Nihilist: In contrast to Brother Nier, who seems to be more idealistic but comes to harden over the game, Father Nier is more of a pessimist who knows that the world is dying. It doesn't stop him from trying to keep his daughter alive and helping people in need.
  • Armor Is Useless: The only armor he wears on his upper body is a single shoulder pad... which does nothing to protect him when the Shadowlord stabs him through that shoulder.
  • Badass Boast: A bunch of them. His first line when the first Shade encounter starts sums it up.
    Nier: Come, I'll tear you apart.
  • BFS: Even his default sword, the Beastlord, is massive. And he still uses it one-handed!
  • Blinding Bangs: In the opening.
  • Cool Old Guy: Well, more middle-aged. People from the village really like him since he helps a lot and can kill Shades like no one else.
  • Crusading Widower: His wife wasn't murdered so he's not out for revenge, but he still crusades for the daughter she left behind.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He has a very dry and self-deprecating sense of humor. That doesn't stop him from throwing shade at his companions as well, Weiss especially.
    Nier: Oh great. Why does every book I meet have a bad attitude?
  • Dumb Muscle:
    • Is stubbornly single-minded in his quest to save Yonah to the point where he reasons that simply killing Shades will get her back. However, in a subversion of this, he isn't actually unintelligent, just ignorant as to the consequences of his actions.
    • He confessed to Weiss that he doesn't care what he has to do to make Yonah better, even if someone asked him to collect horseshit he would do it, because even that is more hopeful than watching her die.
  • Eyepatch After Timeskip: During the time-skip he somehow lost an eye and now wears an eyepatch.
  • Expy: He's remarkably similar to a post-eclipse Guts, down to the physique, missing eye, fixation on the welfare of one person, a band of True Companions that help maintain their humanity, and psychotic obsession with killing a particular kind of supernatural creature in spite of the fact that it won't give them what they really want.
  • Face of a Thug: Some villagers comment on how he looks like a brute, but at the start of the game everyone knows he is a helpful guy who just wants to take care of his daughter and only swings his sword at sheep or monsters. To the monsters, however, he looks and acts like a mass murderer.
  • Gentle Giant: He's a nice guy at heart, who's big on helping people and genuinely does the best he can.
  • Good Parents: His world begins and ends with Yonah. It's to the point where he will eat stew that "tastes like death" simply because Yonah made it for him.
  • I Was Quite a Looker: The World of Recycled Vessel is stated to be a dream journal written by Nier's wife. When Nier goes into it, he assumes the form of his younger self, which is identical to 'Brother' Nier. It can probably be assumed that losing his wife, on top of spending every waking moment from then on protecting his only child, took a toll on him.
  • Knight Templar Parent: Insists that he will kill without hesitation anything standing in his way if it means saving his daughter.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The man is a huge hulking wall of muscle and yet he's still agile, dexterous, and extremely fast with most weapons. Only two-handed swords slow him down, but that's more on the sheer size of them than his own speed.
  • Mangst: Suffers from this a great deal due to his inability to help Yonah, but he can be a bit more open about his concerns than others. One of the major difference between him and Brother Nier is that his anger about his situation is present in all his lines.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Clearly something horrific happened, given that the eyepatch doesn't just cover his eye but also a good chunk of his face.
    • He also mentions to Weiss that Devola got a bit too friendly with him while she was drunk.
  • Overprotective Dad: He's less than happy when he finds out Emil and Yonah have been corresponding.
  • Papa Wolf: To Yonah of course. It quickly extends to his close friends, too.
  • Parental Substitute: He eventually becomes one for Emil, tapping into his fatherly instincts to become a pillar of strength to help the boy cope with his numerous issues.
  • Progressively Prettier: For the remaster of Replicant, a new model was created for father Nier, which makes him look younger and more attractive.
  • A Real Man Is a Killer: Even though he's very uncomfortable with this lifestyle. Yoko Taro even says that unlike Brother Nier, who sold his body for medicine, Father Nier simply kills and takes since he is a grown warrior.
  • Scars Are Forever: Has scars all over his torso and suffers some sort of eye injury during the timeskip.
  • Screaming Warrior: He is more vocal when he strikes than young Nier.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Mostly has this dynamic with Weiss, their snarky banter sometimes bordering on that of an old married couple, though he can be quite snarky towards Kainé as well.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Aside from a few bits of armour.


Other Main Characters

Click here to see her grown up 
Dearest Despair

"Thanks for always being there for me."
Voiced by: Ai Nonaka (JP), Heather Hogan (EN)

Nier's fragile daughter/sister, whose illness provides the driving force behind the plot. She loves Nier more than anything and is extremely devoted and supportive, despite his long absences. She stays at home most of the time, frequently writing letters.

  • Barrier Maiden: The Shadowlord doesn't care if he is the only thing that keeps humanity alive, if Gestalt Yonah dies he'll follow her.
  • Big Brother Worship: Yonah has a bit of a brother complex in the Replicant version that even overlaps with some Big Brother Attraction. An official relationship chart of the main characters for Replicant 1.22 even shows Yonah's feelings towards Nier as "like" with romantic connotations, just like Emil, whereas Nier is shown to like Yonah as a sister. To be fair, Yonah has been so dependent on Nier for all her life that it would be difficult not to develop an attraction to him.
  • Break the Cutie: Stuck in bed with a painful disease isn't fun for anyone, let alone a little girl.
  • Cheerful Child: Even knowing she may be dying, she's always upbeat around Nier and tries to keep him in good spirits. It's implied she may not be as cheerful as she seems though.
  • Daddy's Girl: Literally in Gestalt.
  • Distressed Damsel: Brings about the events of the timeskip. She's absent for almost the entire second half of the game.
  • Expy: Her character is a more positive version of Furiae, a doomed and mostly helpless younger sister dependent on an overprotective older brother. Unlike Furiae however, Yonah is far more cheerful and supportive of her brother in spite of her grave condition. Also, her fixation on her older brother is portrayed in a far more innocent light. However, in a context that eeriely parallels Furiae, Yoko Taro has indicated during an interview that Yonah is not quite as innocent as she appears and stated she has a "twisted heart" when it comes to Nier. Yoko Taro has also said that Yonah has the mindset of a 5 year old. So, it may be possible that she's just self-centered due to being a kid, as kids tend to be like this.
  • Giant Waist Ribbon: After the timeskip she wears a blue one.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Gestalt Yonah willingly accepts death so Replicant Yonah (that's the one you're looking for) can get her life back. Unfortunately, this means Yonah is doomed to die to the Black Scrawl, making it a pointless sacrifice.
  • Huge Schoolgirl: 12 year-old Yonah at 160 cm is very tall for her age, even taller than her brother at age 16 who is only 157 cm tall.
  • Ill Girl: Suffers from the crippling Black Scrawl disease, which Nier desperately seeks to find a cure to. There is none.
  • Lethal Chef: Decided she wanted to make a stew for Nier, and asks him to collect mutton and wheat. He was already less than thrilled about the idea, but gathered them anyway. She makes it for him, and his first comment is that it "smells like someone pissed on a campfire", and immediately notices "black lumps". Then he tastes it, at which point he goes on to comment that it tastes like death. The kicker? He eats it anyway, simply because Yonah made it for him.
    • She later somehow bakes SEVEN cakes for Nier with a melon, watermelon, and a pumpkin. Nier is exasperated, to say the least.
  • Light Is Good: She wears white clothes that reflect her innocence and purity.
  • The Load: Yonah understands that she is mostly useless and a burden on Nier, and therefore tries to stay optimistic and supportive of him in return. Yoko Taro has stated that earlier drafts of Replicant had a greater emphasis of Nier feeling burdened by his sister for a sense of realism, but decided to scrap most of these elements because it made him too sad.
  • Parental Abandonment: Depending on which version, either her mother or both her parents are dead.
  • Plucky Girl: She has the determination to go all the way to the Lost Shrine by herself with only a vague idea of where it is and knowing the whole place is infested with Shades, and while badly ill.
  • Protectorate: Nier's sole motive in the game is to cure her illness or save her from danger.
  • She's All Grown Up: Five years later she's turned into a gorgeous young woman.
  • Spanner in the Works: Absolutely no one expected Gestalt Yonah to up and sacrifice herself so Replicant Yonah could be reunited with Replicant Nier, leading to the Shadowlord's death and failure of Project Gestalt.
  • Third-Person Person: Japanese version only.
  • The Ugly Guy's Hot Daughter: 'Father' Nier is craggy and ape-like, whereas Yonah is delicate and doll-like.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Gestalt Yonah's decision to sacrifice herself to save Replicant Yonah causes the Shadowlord to go berserk and be killed, leading to all the Shades going berserk, and eventually causing the death of all Gestalts and their Replicants, finally ending the human race. In a shorter term, she also doomed her own Replicant, as a Replicant will eventually die of the Black Scrawl if their respective Gestalt is dead and gone.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Her ultimate fate is not revealed in the new Ending E route of Nie R Replicant ver.1.22474487139 - Kainé hasn't seen or heard from Yonah in three years, and she gets sidetracked on her way to the village.
  • When You Coming Home, Dad?: In Gestalt, many of Yonah's letters imply that she'd rather have her father home by her side even as he's out looking for a cure.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: Due to her Shade/Gestalt's death, Yonah will eventually die of the Black Scrawl.

    Grimoire Weiss
"You stand in the presence of great wisdom! I am a text of the darkest, most arcane type, and I could be of assistance to you..."
Voiced by: Shinnosuke "Peter" Ikehata (JP, Original), Hiroki Yasumoto (JP, 1.22) Liam O'Brien (EN)

An egotistical talking Spell Book that Nier picks up by accident and decides to take along with him. They find out he is part of a legend involving his counterpart Grimoire Noir, and that he is key in stopping the Shades. Possessing powerful dark magic and a dry sense of humour, Weiss guides Nier on his search for the cure in the hopes of recovering his lost memories and preventing the End of the World as We Know It.

  • Amnesiac Dissonance: Thanks to Nier breaking his seal quite violently, Weiss remembers nothing of his role in the Project Gestalt. And when someone tries to force him into it, his bonds to the main characters are strong enough that he outright rejects it. He's no less horrified than his friends when the Twins finally make him remember.
  • Arch-Enemy: He despised the man who became Grimoire Noir for what he did to his companion, so the first and last thing he remembers about his past is not liking him.
  • Badass Boast: He has several, especially during his introduction.
    Grimoire Weiss: [laughs] I am Grimoire Weiss! My very name brings kingdoms to their knees!
  • Baleful Polymorph: As revealed in And Then There Were None, he wasn't always a Grimoire.
  • Berserk Button: Addressing him by anything other than "Grimoire Weiss", especially "Book". He gets over it by the end.
    • Being rude towards him and being compared to a normal book really pisses him off. It's the main reason he and Kainé don't get along at first.
  • Big Damn Heroes: He comes to Kainé's aid in Ending E, helping her come from the brink of defeat and vanquish a memory of Hook.
  • Charged Attack: All of Weiss' Sealed Verses can be charged to enhance their power. The more charge they have, the stronger the spell will be. For example, the more Dark Hand is charged, more fists will grow from his pages, which will merge into the rightmost fist and enhance its power when unleashed.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: The supplement material Grimoire Nier reveals that more than 1,000 years ago, Weiss was a nameless Child Soldier recruited by the Hamelin Organization to fight the Legions. He was given medicine to withstand being turned, but it didn't make him immune to being infected with WCS, it just delayed the symptoms. After he was captured and imprisoned in a room with twelve other people, he had to watch how his childhood friend was killed and sucked into a book. The killer then disappeared too, and finally Weiss himself succumbed to the Gestalt process and his soul was sealed. From then on, he was only known as Grimoire Weiss.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Other than his big ego, this is probably his defining trait. It doesn't matter what situation our heroes are in, he'll probably have a quip for it.
  • Despair Event Horizon: When he realizes he and the other subjects' fates had been sealed the moment they were put into the experiment, and what role he's been forced into, he begins laughing.
  • Dub Name Change: He's known as the "Shiro no Sho", the White Book, in Japanese.
  • Electronic Speech Impediment: The remake adds this to him when he's damaged by the Twins and starts stuttering.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: More so in Japanese, as his nickname is Shiro, which is a common pet dog name. This is why he's so insistent on being called by his full name. In English, "Weiss" or "Weissy" is this.
  • Energy Absorption: Dark Gluttony absorbs red magical projectiles and fires them back in the form of either a Sphere of Destruction (Original game) or a Wave-Motion Gun (Replicant remake).
  • Exposition Fairy: Because he's, well, a book, he has the knowledge required to fill Nier in on any backstory or general information he may require about places, people or objects. Though Nier usually tells him to shut up.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: He suffers one of this after the party crosses the Point of No Return. Devola and Popola retake the power of the Sealed Verses during their first boss fight, damaging Weiss in the process and causing him a speech impediment.
  • Grumpy Old Man: He sounds that way in the Japanese version.
  • Heroic RRoD: Without Grimoire Noir, his physical form cannot exist. The damage he suffered at the hands of Devola and Popola didn't help either.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Helps to give Nier a fighting chance against the Shadowlord, sacrificing his physical form in the process to cripple the Shadowlord's magic. Ending E of Replicant ver. 1.22 reveals that he's alive, but has lost his corporeal form.
  • Insistent Terminology: You shall refer to the great book Grimoire Weiss by his full and proper name! Unfortunately everyone ignores his complaints. However, his final words to Nier state that he's become fond of being called Weiss.
  • Insufferable Genius: Constantly mocks Nier for his lack of brains and/or sense and acts incredibly arrogant whenever he's proven right.
  • Insult of Endearment: Initially, he meant for Kainé's nickname "hussy" to be derogatory, but in Ending E, he's shown to be using it in an almost affectionate tone, which shows how much he values their friendship.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He may come off as an egotistical stick-in-the-mud, but ultimately, he's loyal as hell to his friends, and comes to appreciate humanity and lament its suffering.
  • Large Ham: Loves giving big dramatic introductions. Nier and co. tease him for it.
  • Light Is Good: His name means "white", he has silver clasps and despite his Insufferable Genius moments, is loyal to his friends to the end.
  • The Mean Brit: Zigzagged in the dub, as Liam O'Brien's voice sounds like a stuffy British man using American consonant pronunciations.
  • Megaton Punch: Dark Hand manifests massive magical arms to punch foes.
  • Noble Male, Roguish Male: With Papa Nier in the dub; Weiss is a well-spoken masculine-sounding book who likes to bring up the wonders of the world, while Nier is a down-to-earth father who rarely ponders outside his objectives.
  • Not Quite Dead: Ending E reveals that Weiss still lives in a non-corporeal form. He returns to help Kainé one more time to save Nier from non-existence. Together, they defeat Memory Hook.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: To his chagrin.
  • Power Floats: He's a magic book, he can't really move otherwise. Unlike most examples, he needs stamina to remain afloat and will stop doing so if he's too tired.
  • Red Is Heroic: Weiss' magic is colored red and black.
  • Slut-Shaming: Keeps calling Kainé a hussy and suspects that she said something lewd to Emil when he confided in her.
  • Snarky Non-Human Sidekick: Has an endless supply of snark to keep the dialogue moving and provide much needed comedy.
    (To Nier) "How remarkably useless of you."
  • Surrounded by Idiots: And hussies.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Nobody seems to consider a talking magical book of legend to be worthy of more than a "Oh, neat" reaction. In fact most people take issue with his manners more than anything else. The only exceptions are Devola and Popola but that's probably due to their involvement with him and Project Gestalt.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With the entire main cast over time, especially Kainé.

Twin Blades of Revenge

"It cannot be a sin to exist."
"I'll rip out your eyeballs and piss in the fucking sockets!"
Voiced by: Atsuko Tanaka (JP), Laura Bailey (EN)

Outcast from the Aerie at a young age, Kainé is a beautiful yet hot-tempered intersex swordswoman. She dresses skimpily and constantly uses foul language, but hides a tragic past with many insecurities. She was possessed by a Shade which allows her to use magic and provides enhanced strength, but also makes her a danger to others.

She joins Nier in his quest after they avenge her grandmother, to repay him for giving her the will to live.

  • Action Girl: To a ridiculous degree. She dual-wields a pair of serrated blades, hops around like crazy, and employs Full-Contact Magic.
  • An Arm and a Leg: When Hook attacked her home and killed her grandma, it tore of an arm and a leg of Kainé to stop her. Kainé regained those limbs thanks to Tyrann.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: In Replicant, she becomes playable in the Ending E path.
  • Badass in Distress: While petrified after Knave of Hearts escapes; again, in the second visit to the Aerie, where a Shade knocks her out and Nier must take care of the Shade army by himself.
  • Bandage Babe: Her left arm and leg are permanently bandaged. They disappear in the Ending E path, after Kainé regains her humanity.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: She's sick of living but will fight for Nier since he is one of the few to accept her and forgive her attitude.
  • BFS: She wields two curved, serrated blades as long as her legs. v1.22’s Ending E brings her down to just one, as one of them broke after her fight with Nier.
  • Bird Run: Her default way of moving. Running any other way with those giant swords of hers would end up chopping something.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Kainé's magic is blue.
  • But Now I Must Go: In Ending A.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Her feelings for Nier, which she would prefer to express through fighting (and dying) for his sake rather than words.
  • Contralto of Danger: She is an incredibly skilled fighter with a lower-pitched voice in both English and Japanese.
  • Combat Stilettos: The heels are lower than many other examples.
  • Cool Big Sis: For Emil, the only person she is unfailingly kind to. She also becomes one to Yonah after Nier gives up his existence in exchange for hers, as evidenced in Yonah's diary during Ending E.
  • Cluster Bleep-Bomb: In the japanese dub, Kainé's worst made-up swears are these, combined with Symbol Swearing in the subtitles. Joked with during the battle with the Knave of Hearts, and then again in Replicant v1.22 with her skills having strings of symbols in their names.
    Kainé: "%&*#$)+%+^#?@!!"
    Weiss: "What the hell does "%&*#$)+%+^#?@" even mean?"
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Ostracised for her body, abandoned, had to watch her grandmother die, mutilated, then possessed by a Shade, ostracised even more...
  • Death Seeker: Wants to die and join her grandmother after Hook is finally defeated. Nier talks her out of it.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Kainé is at first aggressive, cold and mistrustful of the others, but starts to warm up to them after they save her life, joins the party, treats Emil like a brother and eventually falls in love with Nier.
  • Demonic Possession: Is possessed by the bloodthirsty Shade Tyrann.
  • Designer Babies: The original Kainé was Kali's daughter with her husband, created through genetic engineering and merged with Legion genes and combat patterns.
  • Determinator: Considering the only reason she's even alive is due to her own willpower...
  • Deuteragonist: While the thrust of the main story belongs to Nier's quest to save Yonah, Kainé's importance to both Nier and the narrative at large slowly grow until she becomes a Final Boss, Nier's love interest, and, in the final hours, the game's protagonist.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: With Nier in Ending C. It's actually death by his hand, but same principle.
  • Expy: Of Angelus. Both are bitter, powerful and rash women that accompany the main protagonist on his blood-soaked quest to save his sister, and eventually develop feelings for said protagonist. However, she also has shades of Leonard due to her self-loathing over an aspect of her she had no control over being born with. Unlike Angelus, she isn't arrogant at all and her bitterness does somewhat fade, and unlike Leonard, she joins the protagonist to have a reason to live rather than to die.
  • Final Boss: In Endings C and D. The Shadowlord's death causes her to relapse into her Shade form. Nier works with Tyrann to put her down.
  • Hermaphrodite: Due to the creators wondering how "the female lead being turned into a man" would affect things. Apparently, this isn't due to her being possessed by a Shade but, rather, because there was a mistake when creating her Replicant data.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: Her backstory reveals that Kainé forced herself to change due to her harsh lifestyle and not being able to trust anyone. Rather adorably, when Emil reveals that they tells campfire stories while waiting outside towns for Nier, she tells him to stop because she's "got a fucking image to maintain."
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Summons her swords out of nowhere.
  • Icy Gray Eyes: Her eyes were gray in the original versions of the game.
  • Instant Runes: When generating her lightning ball spells.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice When Gretel deflected a Dark Spear with its weapon, it broke in two. The upper half went through Kainé's chest, knocking her out for the rest of the fight. She survived thanks to the increased regeneration Tyrann provided her, but she transformed into a Shade until Nier, Weiss and Emil knocked her out.
  • Intersex Tribulations: She was bullied as a child for being intersex, and dresses so provocatively to emphasize her femininity.
  • It Was a Gift: The Lunar Tear that Nier gives her, which later serves as Kainé's only reminder of him after he is wiped from existence.
  • It Has Been an Honor: She thanks Nier after he kills her in Ending C.
  • Leitmotif: "Kainé - Salvation"
  • Lightning Bruiser: She's quite agile and mobile, but her swords and magic hit like a TRUCK (though mostly in cutscenes). This is more clearly seen in the Replicant remake, when she's being controlled in the Ending E path: her attacks are quite fast, and her weapon can do 999 damage.
  • Love Hurts: In the Drama CDs, following Ending D, she does - despite everything - on some vague, subconscious level remember Nier. She cannot recall specifics, however, driving her to depression as she searches for what she's lost without even knowing what it is.
  • Magic Knight: She's incredibly dangerous with her swords, and she can produce electricity-based magic attacks to annihilate anything dumb enough to stand in front of her.
  • May–December Romance: Heavily downplayed with both Niers. In Gestalt, Nier is much older than her and a widower, which is why he doesn't show much attraction towards her until the events of Ending C. In Replicant she's only a year older than Nier, but the events of Ending E create a complicated situation where Nier comes back from non-existence as a 16-year-old-boy, while Kainé is now technically a 25-year-old woman, with the mind and body of a 20-year-old.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Lots of people comment on her looks, with one of Yonah's letters mentioning that Devola describes her as "put together in all the right places". Also deconstructed, as it's made clear that her ludicrously skimpy outfit is something she deliberately wears to emphasize her femininity because she's insecure about having both male and female genitalia.
  • Neutral Female: Twice, and justified on both accounts. First against Wendy, but she's excused because she's knocked out. Then, in the Final Battle against the Shadowlord, where Nier explicitly asks her to stay back and protect Yonah. She also gets captured because she broke the temple's rule but she does break out in time for the boss fight.
  • Parental Abandonment: Literally. She was Raised by Grandparents.
  • Pervert Revenge Mode: This trope becomes a secret achievement players can earn in Replicant while playing as her in the Ending E path. If you tilt the camera to get a peek under her dress, she'll angrily kick the camera back behind her. Do it too many times and she'll get fed up and flat out kill you, resulting in a Non Standard Game Over and earning you the achievement "Daredevil". See it here.
  • Promoted to Playable: The Ending E route in the Remake has you play as Kainé years after the events of Ending D.
  • Recurring Boss: You get to fight her at least twice over the course of the game. The third time happens after you unlock Ending B.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: When seized by blood-lust.
  • Serrated Blade of Pain: She dual wields two of these. By the time of Ending E, she only wields one.
  • Sexy Backless Outfit: That nightdress bares it all.
  • Sharing a Body: With the Shade Tyrann, a psychopath who derives pleasure from killing and threatens to take over permanently if she ever "goes soft".
  • She-Fu: Her moveset involves a lot of kicks, handsprings and backflips.
  • Shock and Awe: Her magic has more of an electric theme than Nier's.
  • Shut Up, Kirk!: She gives a rare heroic version to Nier in Ending E, as she refuses to let him stay non-existent. She succeeds in bringing him back despite his protests.
    Nier: Kainé... Don't come... go back... don't...
    Kainé: Shut up, shut up, SHUT UP!! I already made up my mind. Nobody tells me what to do. I swore I would be a sword. I swore that I would be YOUR sword! Do you hear me? So I am going to get you back, and I don't care what it takes! Who the fuck do you think you are to just up and disappear like that, huh?! I'M the one who gets to decide what my life means to me. It's MY life, and I'll do whatever I want with it! So quit wasting time like a brainless fuckwit AND GET YOUR ASS BACK HERE NOW!!
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: She tells Hook to stuff it when it imitates Kali and tries to convince her to give up so it can eat her.
    Hook: Kainé... it's me... Grandma... Oh, how you've grown.
    Nier: Kainé! what's wrong?!
    Hook: Oh, it gladdens my heart to finally see you again.
    Kainé: Grandma?
    Hook: Come, Kainé, come to your Grandma's side. You've been lonely for so, so long... So much pain... so much despair... why go on living anymore? [Kainé immediately stops walking] Kainé?
    Kainé: Is that it?
    Hook: Hmm?
    Kainé: Are you finished yet?
    Hook: Don't speak to your Grandma like-
    Kainé: You're going to stop talking now. And then I'm going to slowly walk over to you, cram my hand inside your goddamn bitch-ass chest, and PULL OUT YOUR FUCKING HEART!!
    Hook: Hahahahahahahaaa ha ha ha ha ha ha... AAAAHAHAHAHAHA... AAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA!!
    Kainé: My grandmother would NEVER say that! She's never told me to give up on life! Never! I've spent my entire life searching for a way to avenge her death! She gave me the strength to deal with this goddamn mutant body! Do you know how long I've been like this?! How much I loathe myself?!
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Not one for subtlety. See the above quote, or these examples.
  • Sour Outside, Sad Inside: The amount of stuff that she hides behind that tough exterior is heartbreaking. She never tells the others about it either.
  • Stripperiffic: As Yahtzee puts it, Kainé's wardrobe basically consists of "a jockstrap and a negligee". Grimoire Nier attempts to justify this by saying that she took a liking to clothes that emphasized the feminine parts of her body after enduring abuse from the other villagers for being intersex. Her grandmother encouraged her to assert her femininity, even flaunt it, and Kainé (as she is wont) took it perhaps a little further than intended. Unusually, people in-game do find her mode of dress genuinely odd and frequently comment on its impracticality: the first time she meets Nier, his first words to her are a comment on her clothes, Weiss frequently needles her about it, and the villagers are intimidated by her partially because of it.
  • Supernatural Gold Eyes: In official artwork, in the 1.22... remake and in her Shade form, combined with Black Eyes of Crazy.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: When her inner-shade, Tyrann, comes out to play.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Louise is probably one of the few Shades she came the closest to outright pitying for, in contrast to Wendy, the fused Shade from her hometown, Hook, and the Knave of Hearts. Even Mother Goose, who was essentially a mother protecting her children from getting slaughtered by Nier, elicits a Shut Up, Hannibal! response from her.
  • Taken for Granite: Allows this to happen so she can protect the village from Knave of Hearts. It lasts for five whole years, but she recovers.
  • Token Wholesome: This trope is inverted as she is the only character in the game that is scantily clad, which everyone around her treats as an oddity, most noticeably with Nier, Weiss who snipes barbs at her attire frequently, and the villagers who find her intimidating as a result alongside the Shade in her body.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Kainé keeps in her house the wreath of Lunar Tears Kali gave her before her death. By the time of Ending E, she kept Emil's staff as one of these for three years until they reunited at the Forest of Myth.
  • Tragic Monster: Particularly in Ending C. She ignores Shades' pleas, even though she can understand them, because Tyrann will take control if she goes soft. When Nier's support soothes her sadness and anger she turns and asks to be killed.
  • Transgender Fetishization: Played with. While she's intersex, the story means for the player to realize how unsettling the fanservice of her character is supposed to be. She still ends up being a sexy and attractive woman, but she does so of her own choice to assert her feminity.
  • Tsundere: She's harsh, hot-tempered and foul-mouthed, but shows a much more thoughtful and caring side at times.
  • Vengeance Feels Empty: Downplayed after she kills Hook. She is happy to have killed the bastard after it killed her grandmother, but she finds herself lost on what to do after as her grandmother was the only thing left that she had reason to live for, causing her to feel like she doesn't have a reason to live. Weiss' rant at her for that and Nier stepping in after has her find a new reason to live in the end.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Despite their initial hostility towards each other, she and Weiss end up developing this kind of friendship. She's also this to a lesser extent with Nier in Gestalt.
  • You Killed My Father: The reason she fights Hook is because it killed Kali, her grandmother and one of the very few people she knew that loved her.
  • Younger than She Looks: Wait, wait, wait, she's seventeen?! This is altered in Gestalt to make her twenty, but her cynical attitude and deep voice still make her come off as older.

    Emil aka No. 7
Click here to see him as the ultimate weapon 
The Loneliness of an Experimental Weapon

"We were really human once. Just normal human children you could find anywhere else."
Voiced by: Mai Kadowaki (JP), Julie Ann Taylor (EN)

A polite young boy who lives with his butler in the mansion on the hill. He cut himself off from the outside world due to his ability to turn people to stone merely by looking at them. After Nier arrives at his home, Emil offers to help in their quest and becomes firm friends with Nier and Kainé.

After the timeskip his terrible past is revealed, which leads to him obtaining new powers.

  • Bad Powers, Good People: He's a lovely boy - he even willingly isolates himself and wears a blindfold because he doesn't want to hurt anybody.
  • Break the Cutie: Over and over and over. Prime examples being his past, his sister, the Aerie incident and his near-death experience.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Ending E in v1.22 has him do this for Kainé.
  • Can't Spit It Out: Develops a romantic interest with Nier, pursumably starting around the time he transforms. However, he never works up the courage to tell Nier and instead takes joy in being his friend.
  • Cheerful Child: He sounds and initially appears to be around Yonah's age, and after his introduction, he's quite the optimist.
  • Creepy Child: Before you get to know him.
  • Cute Monster Boy: Even after becoming No. 7, he remains as endearingly sweet and cheerful as ever.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: He was experimented on to become a weapon, and apparently only one of the scientists treated him and his sister like children.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: In his No. 7 form, he's draped in black and uses dark magic, but he's a genuinely kind and sweet kid and even heals Nier on occasion.
  • Deadly Gaze: Turns anyone he looks at to stone, whether he wants to or not. He loses it after his transformation, and even gains the power to undo the effect with his magic, though we only see him do this once.
  • Dem Bones: After the defeat of No. 6 he absorbs her body and becomes a floating skeletal creature.
  • Discard and Draw: After defeating and fusing with his sister, No. 6/Halua, he loses his petrification power but gains her immense magical powers as a result.
  • Don't Look at Me!: He hates his skeleton body, and is quite uncomfortable being looked at as a result. He gets better as the game progresses, thanks to Kainé and Nier's unconditional acceptance of him for who he is rather than what he looks like.
    Emil: Just a second. I can't... I can't see very well... Dah! No! DON'T! DON'T LOOK AT ME!!
    Nier: Emil, what's wrong?
    Emil: Stay back!
  • Dub Personality Change: He falls in love with Nier over the course of the game and shows no interest in other women, often fantasizing over Nier. Due to Nier in Gestalt being much older, this aspect of his character highly reduced in that version, being more understated and vaguely alluded to.
  • Expy: Of Seere, being an immortal child that is incredibly idealistic and sees the best in everyone. However, unlike Seere, Emil's idealism is more realistic, whereas Seere's is borderline naivete. Additionally, Emil is fully capable of handling himself in a fight, whereas Seere relies on his pact-partner Golem to get through fights alive. And finally, Emil selflessly sacrifices himself so that Nier and Kainé can save Yonah, while Seere's sacrifice is born more out of a selfish desire to be a hero.
  • Forgotten First Meeting: Emil met Tyrann and the original selves of Nier, Yonah and Kainé, before Project Gestalt turned them into Shades. When a Red Eye attacked Kali and Kainé's mansion, Emil was brought there as part of the defense as Kali did everything to give Masayoshi/Tyrann the means to protect her home.
  • The Heart: Cares equally about everyone, tries to stop them fighting and maintains a cheerful atmosphere.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In Ending B, his head survives.
  • Hesitant Sacrifice: During his sacrifice he admits that he's scared and doesn't want to die.
  • Human Weapon: To a lesser extent than his sister; while she was designed to be the ultimate weapon, he was created to stop her if she ever got loose.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: After living alone for so long who can blame him? He'd gladly die for any of them too.
  • Immortal Immaturity: Despite being over a thousand years old by the time of the story, he still looks and acts like a teenage boy.
  • Last of His Kind: Due to the fact that his involvement in the Hamelin Organization's Project Snow White stopped his aging, he is the only surviving human in the world, even though he doesn't consider himself one anymore. This also means that by the time of Automata, he is the sole remaining person of this time left, and the last living remnants of humanity are him and his countless clones.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: In gameplay this happens to his victims after they're petrified and Nier or Weiss hit them with any attack.
  • Morality Chain: For Kainé. Right after the battle against the Shadowlord, Kainé begins to give into her Shade again and warns Nier to stay away since Emil is no longer around to snap her out of it.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: He rebuilt his body with an extra pair of arms by the time of Ending E.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: After he accidentally causes the deaths of innocent people by destroying the Aerie.
  • Nice Guy: Emil is an absolute sweetheart and has no bad bone in his body. He's really the only outwardly kindhearted of the group.
  • Nigh-Invulnerable: It's revealed that the Ultimate Weapon lives up to its name when his head survives Popola's explosion.
  • Not Quite Dead: In Ending B, it is revealed that his head survived his would-be sacrifice. According to certain expanded material, he would later go on to have many adventures by himself and would even single-handedly fight off an alien invasion.
  • Parental Abandonment: In one of Emil's flashbacks, he explains that he and Halua's parents died in an accident.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: The smallest character in the party( barring Weiss, who’s a book), yet powerful enough to match Wendy in a beam struggle and then subsequently nuke the entire Aerie into dust, albeit unintentionally.
  • Please, Don't Leave Me: Shouts this at Kainé after fighting her shade.
  • The Pollyanna: No matter what horrors Emil goes through, he's always kind and cheerful.
  • Power Incontinence: He can't turn off his Taken for Granite Deadly Gaze, forcing him to bandage his eyes shut and hide himself away in his mansion home. After his transformation, he exchanges one version of this trope for another: When he pushes himself too hard in the battle against Wendy, he loses control and nukes the Aerie.
  • Power Limiter: The bandages around his eyes.
  • Precocious Crush: Emil develops a crush on Nier.
  • Prophet Eyes: Once he transforms, his eyes become white and featureless. He's not blind, however.
  • Purple Is Powerful: Once he transforms, his magic is predominantly purple-colored, and he's the party's strongest spellcaster.
  • Really 700 Years Old: He was alive before the Shadowlord existed, becoming a Project Snow White weapon in 2026. By the time of the game, he's around 1,400 years old..
  • Resistant to Magic: According to Weiss, Emil has an immense resistance to magic. This is the main reason Weiss tells Nier to only use magic during the fight with Halua, as melee weapons could hurt Emil while he was still inside her, but magic would do little to him.
  • Series Mascot: Emil in his No. 7 form is arguably the mascot of the series, to the point that Taro Yoko is known for wearing a mask of Emil during public appearances.
  • Straight Gay: According to Yoko Taro, Emil is confirmed to be gay and has a crush on Nier, displaying no stereotypical traits of either Camp Gay or Manly Gay. This is confirmed in Replicant when Emil fantasizes over getting married. Nier tells Emil some day he’ll get married to a woman, which Emil responds with disinterest and indirectly mentions behind Nier’s back he isn’t interested in women.
  • Taken for Granite: If Emil makes eye contact with someone, they'll be turned into stone. Shades are not immune to this. It's effectively a One-Hit Kill as the effect's permanent unless something dispels it, which only Emil himself can do once he gains Halua's magic.
  • Time Abyss: Due to being experimented upon by the Hamelin Organization, by the events of Nier he's around 1400 years old, give or take a few depending if it's Replicant or Gestalt. By the time of Automata, he's over 9,900.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Considering all of the horrors he goes through, it's a miracle that he still presses on with his optimistic attitude. And tops it off with a Heroic Sacrifice... or at least, an attempted one. Some of his clones did indeed lose it after so long, though.
  • Trauma Conga Line: While most characters experience at least some form of this, Emil gets special mention for the sheer amount of crap he goes through. He isolates himself from other people for over 1,000 years because of his eyes, and when he finally makes friends with Nier and Kainé he's forced to petrify Kainé to protect the village. Five years later he thinks he might find a cure for his condition, but instead discovers that he was a test subject in an experiment to create an ultimate weapon along with his sister, and his body is forcefully changed to that of a skeleton, which he is deeply ashamed of. He and Nier save Kainé, but because the villagers are frightened of them he's forced to sleep outside with Kainé, facing even more prejudice than before. And then he loses control of his powers and destroys an entire village, killing dozens of innocent people. This is all topped off by his Heroic Sacrifice, which actually turns into a Hesitant Sacrifice (as noted above), as he reveals all he wants is to see Nier, Kainé, and Weiss again and that he's terrified of dying.
  • Trauma-Induced Amnesia: He forgot all about the experiments and his sister due to this. The experiments themselves probably didn't help.
  • Undead Abomination: In his "weapon" form, he is a skeletal being with a rictus grin and magic reserve.
  • What Have I Become?: He's absolutely horrified when he first transforms, screaming at Nier to stay back and not to look at him. Nier has to hug it out with him.


    Devola and Popola
Voiced by: Ryoko Shiraishi (JP), Eden Riegel (EN)

Beautiful twins who run the village Nier lives in. Popola seems to do the actual work at the library while Devola can be found singing either near the fountain or in the local bar, and manages local job openings. The two help Nier by informing him about the Grimoires and the cure to the Black Scrawl, and by directing him to several different locations. They also regularly supply him with sidequests.

  • Anti-Villain: Seeing as they're the ones directing the events of the game, including instigating the Shadowlord's actions.
  • Angsty Surviving Twin: Popola does not take well to being left all alone without her beloved sister. NieR: Automata reveals that the main flaw of the Twin System Androids was that if one of them was harmed or killed, the other would become unstable. After their failure to save Project Gestalt, no more androids using it were ever made and the surviving Devola and Popola models were ostracized and persecuted for the failure of the Shadowlord's guardians.
  • Beautiful Singing Voice: Devola loves to play her lute and sing the village theme, "Song of the Ancients". She is often found singing at the fountain or the tavern. Popola can sing the same theme, but her job as the librarian keeps her busy, and when she has time, she doesn't like to sing without having a special drink since she feels shy.
  • Becoming the Mask: Routes C/D reveal that Devola and Popola initially only regarded Nier as a "tool" like all other Replicants, but soon find themselves to have developed an attachment to him and are very reluctant to fight him.
  • Cool Big Sis: Often take care of Yonah when Nier's away. Sometimes behave this way toward 'Brother' Nier too.
  • Dance Battler: During the first phase of their boss fight, Popola dances in the background while firing projectiles at the player.
  • Dark Action Girl: Both of them are skilled in the magical arts and while not conventionally evil, they’re morally grey antagonists who will do anything to save humanity at the expense of the Replicants.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Devola in Popola's.
  • The Extremist Was Right: The two are confirmed to be in the right in terms of humanity's long-term survival, as the relapsing of Shades eventually leads to the Replicants dying out from the Black Scrawl, with several Shades outliving the Replicants by several hundred years before dying out and marking the end of humanity.
  • Friend to All Children: Both Devola and Popola enjoy the company of Yonah and the village children. They look after Yonah and Devola loves to play her lute and sing for the village children nearby at the fountain.
  • Hot Librarian: Popola apparently lives at the library, and is swamped with confessions and love letters. You can even find an NPC outside the Library that is trying to work himself up to go in and talk to her.
  • Identical Twin ID Tag: Devola has wavy hair and is right-handed; Popola has straight hair and is left-handed.
  • In Vino Veritas: According to Nier, Popola doesn't drink because it sends her into a violent rage, whereas Devola tends to get a little too friendly. Popola will only drink when a specific drink gets made for her, and even then, she only does so to sing with Devola.
  • "Leave Your Quest" Test: Before turning on Nier and his party, the twins ask him if there's any chance he could just turn back and return to the village instead of continuing on to rescue Yonah. You can actually agree to their request and do so, allowing you to finish up side content and return later. However, refusing and triggering the battle with them will lock you into the endgame.
  • Life's Work Ruined: A case where they did this to themselves. Their assault on Weiss ended up mortally damaging him and instead of fusing with Noir to restore humanity as he was supposed to, he ended up destroying him and helping Nier kill the Shadowlord, completely ruining the most important parts of Project Gestalt, dooming humanity and, ultimately, the Replicants to extinction, and as NieR: Automata would reveal, dooming their entire line to be ostracized for their failure.
  • Madness Mantra: A hysterical Popola after Devola dies and she attempts an all-out suicide attack against the group.
    "No stopping! No stopping ever! AAAAAAAAH!!!"
  • Magic Staff: They each gain a staff when you fight them.
  • Mr. Exposition: They're the ones to tell Nier about how to cure the Black Scrawl. They also give him the truth near the end.
  • Mythology Gag: Their names are derived from a sword in Drakengard known in Japanese as the Debolpopol and in English as Skald's Song. The weapon's lore mentioned a pair of blacksmith sisters, Dobo and Popo, who used their finest creation, the blade, to save their mother.
  • Nothing Personal: The twins have no real ill will towards Nier or the Replicants in general, and even seem somewhat apologetic for turning against him. However, once Devola gets killed in the ensuing battle, Popola completely unravels, and the fight becomes very personal.
  • Please Wake Up: Popola, to Devola, who dies in her arms after failing to kill Nier.
  • Polar Opposite Twins: Devola seems to be the more outgoing one compared to Popola, who is composed and serious.
  • Ridiculously Human Robots: They are some of the first androids made with the goal of preserving humanity.
  • Robot Girls: They're actually androids, rather than humans/Replicants.
  • Soulless Shell: The game refers to them as soulless automatons, though they subvert this in their final moments.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Debol vs Devola and Popol vs Popola, from Japanese to English.
  • Taking You with Me: Falling into despair because they killed Devola, Popola unleashes the full might of her power with the intent of dying and taking out the ones who killed her sister. Thanks to Emil's intervention to shield his friends with his own abilities, she only succeeds in rendering him a disembodied head, and in killing herself and reducing her library into a smoking crater.
  • Threshold Guardians: At the Lost Shrine.
  • Teleportation Spam: During their fight, they teleport throughout the room the party fights them in, especially Popola.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Popola and Devola, respectively, to some extent. It's more obvious in the Japanese version.
  • Using You All Along: They're revealed to have been manipulating Nier from the very beginning, using him as a pawn to fulfill their plans regarding Project Gestalt, even if it'll cost him his sense of self. This bites them hard when he's successful in overpowering them in battle, resulting in their demise.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Popola is completely unable to bear Devola's death and snaps, degenerating into a rabid beast that wants nothing but to murder the hell out of Nier.
    Nier: Popola... Let's stop this now.
    Popola: Stop? Stop? *sob* Now you wanna stop?! You think you have the luxury to stop? You cut down my sister like a goddamn animal and now you wanna STOP?!
    Emil: Popola, wait! It doesn't have to-!
    Popola:No one STOPS! It's way too late to STOP! NO ONE STOPS!! EEYAAAGH!!!
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: By the endgame, it's revealed that they are manipulating events in order to force the resurrection of humanity, even at the expense of the newly sentient Replicants whose bodies would be taken over. Their actions are motivated by the increasing number of relapsing Shades and with it the Black Scrawl killing their Replicant counterparts. Since Nier and company aren't willing to let themselves and everyone they know be subject to a mass Grand Theft Me, humanity goes extinct.

    The King of Façade
"Rules do not exist to bind us; they exist so that we may know our freedoms."
Voiced by: Yosuke Shigematsu (original), Maru Ayasato (child, 1.22), Jun'ya Enoki (teenager, 1.22)

A boy who inherits leadership of Façade when his father dies of the Black Scrawl, despite his tendency to break the rules. Nier visits his kingdom to learn if they have found a cure so he can save Yonah. He's friendly and helpful to the main characters, but also shows great care for his citizens.

He is friends with Fyra despite their difference in status. His real name is Sechs.

  • A Child Shall Lead Them: He's around the same age as Yonah when he takes the throne, and still just a teenager after the timeskip.
  • Badass Normal: Holds his own in combat as well as the main characters, despite having no magical powers to back him up. He even manages to take down the nigh-immortal boar Shade that Nier was unable to, albeit at the cost of his own life...
  • Big Damn Heroes: Near the game of the game, Sechs, his advisor and six Men of the Mask save the party from Goose and unseal the door they couldn't open, allowing them to go deeper into the Shadowlord's castle. After that, they fought and slew Goose, at the cost of their lives.
  • Bishounen: He's described in the novel as very beautiful, at least in Fyra's eyes.
  • Blade on a Stick: Like the other Men of the Mask this is his main weapon.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: He's rude and irritable in his first encounter with Nier, although he quickly gets a lot nicer.
  • Cool Mask: He's willing to almost get himself killed to attain it.
  • Determinator: Despite being covered in wounds and on the brink of death, he still manages to make one last fatal attack on Goose.
  • Distressed Dude: At the beginning of the first Façade arc, he goes by himself to the sealed temple to find his father's mask. Naturally, he gets in over his head and Nier has to rescue him.
  • Hold the Line: Stays behind with his men to fend off Goose while Nier and friends get the Shadowlord, knowing full well they'll go down fighting. He succeeds in killing Goose, at the cost of his life.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Sometimes, such as when he gets embarrassed by having to kiss Fyra in public at their wedding.
  • No Name Given: His real name, Sechs, only appears in external sources. He's always referred to as the Prince/King of Façade in-game, or Kai-Sama in his people's language.
  • Parental Abandonment: His father dies of the Black Scrawl shortly before the game begins and his mother is never mentioned. The Royal Advisor is a kind of Parental Substitute.
  • Real Men Don't Cry: He tells Nier to leave him alone at Fyra's grave, so they don't witness a king's tears.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Even while he was a young child, he was prepared to listen to Nier when no one else would. He also is willing to bend the rules if needed to get what is needed done.
  • Rebel Prince: He breaks a lot of Façade's rules as a child, simply because he feels like it. The citizens say they wouldn't tolerate it if he wasn't so popular.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Against Roc's pack after he kills Fyra. He finishes off Roc himself.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Despite being so young and living in such an oppressive society as Façade, he is determined to help his people and not only puts his life on the line for them when they get attacked by wolves, but also cares about things like public morale and food shortages. After the timeskip, he joins Nier and friends in battle a few times as well.
  • Serious Business: He uses these exact words to describe twirling his mask when he gets it.
  • Shout-Out: When he finds his father's mask, he does a dance and holds it up while a cute little tune plays, calling Majora's Mask to mind.
  • The Wise Prince: So much. He's kind and friendly, determined and devoted to his people and their cause, a good fighter, and wise beyond his years. However the universe seems to hate him and wants to make his life miserable.
  • Widowed at the Wedding: The Shade wolf Roc, seeking to avenge the deaths of most of his pack at the hands of the People of the Mask, brutally attacked Fyra at their wedding, mortally injuring her. Sechs is so heartbroken and enraged that he finishes the job, exterminating Roc's pack and stabbing Roc to death with his spear.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Purple hair. It can look silver at times, though.

"Oh, screw the rules!"
Voiced by: Maru Ayasato

A young girl who lives in Façade. She was rescued by Kainé, which gained Kainé the acceptance of the citizens. Fyra however is not yet a formal citizen, and as such is not allowed to speak. She helps Nier and Grimoire Weiss learn the ways and language of Façade, then leads them to the sealed temple so they can rescue the wayward prince.

After the timeskip, she and the King are engaged to be married, and Nier and company get an invite to the wedding.

  • All of the Other Reindeer: First due to her scars, and then due to being a stranger in Façade.
  • Blood-Splattered Wedding Dress: Being gnawed on by a Shade wolf does that.
  • Break the Cutie: Her childhood was just horrible. She kept an optimistic attitude, yet when things started to look up for her, Roc killed her at her own wedding.
  • Cheerful Child: Pre-timeskip.
  • Cute Mute: Not actually mute, but the rules forbid her from talking until she receives a citizen's permit. Instead, she uses sign language to communicate. She does eventually get to speak after marrying the King, but these are her dying words.
  • Dub Name Change: Her Japanese name is romanized as Vier, but it's romanized as "Fīa" note , hence why it was altered for the English version.
  • The Faceless: We never see her face beneath the mask.
  • Not with Them for the Money: They're as unequal a pairing as you can imagine, but Fyra and the King Marry for Love.
  • Parental Abandonment: Quite literally, her parents were disgusted with her so they sent her to Façade.
  • Pimped-Out Dress: By Façade's standards, her wedding dress appears very sumptuous, decorated by hundreds of gold medallions.
  • Plucky Girl: She braves the dangers of the desert to help save the King.
  • Scars Are Forever: She has burn scars on her face she is sensitive about. The King and Weiss still find her beautiful, and because of her mask the player never sees them anyway.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: When the Prince goes missing, she decides to go look for him anyway, even though it's against Façade's rules for commoners to enter the temple he disappeared into. She even says "Screw the rules" word for word.
  • Unsound Effect: Makes a peculiar sound when she runs.

Voiced by: Mari Yokoo (JP), Wendee Lee (EN)

Kainé's grandmother and biological mother. She lived in the Aerie with her and they loved each other deeply. Her death is the reason Kainé fights against the Shades.

  • Determinator: She never stopped supporting Kainé, and she gave her granddaughter the strength to bear the suffering she endured.
  • The Ghost: She never appears physically in game, but her voice can be heard when Hook tries to hypnotize Kainé. In Ending E, Kainé meets her when she's knocked out by her memory of Hook and ends up in a Deathdream.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Just like Kainé, Kali was cunning, vulgar and violent, but she cared deeply for her granddaughter.
  • Meaningful Name: Kali is a Hindi goddess, Parvati's aspect as a destroyer of evil and protector of the innocent.
  • Posthumous Character: Hook killed her in front of Kainé.
  • War Hero: Her original human self was once a soldier, and she was praised worldwide as a hero for participating in the 13th Crusade that ended with a Red Eye's defeat.

    Jakob and Gideon 

Jakob voiced by: Makoto Naruse (JP), Yuri Lowenthal (EN, Original), Sam Riegel (EN, 1.22)
Gideon voiced by: Mutsumi Tamura (JP), Spike Spencer (EN, child), Yuri Lowenthal (EN, teenager)

Two brothers who run a blacksmith shop outside the Junk Heap. Jakob is the elder, more levelheaded and professional one, while Gideon is younger and emotional. Both siblings are the only characters who can upgrade your weapons.

  • An Arm and a Leg: Gideon frantically tries to pull Jakob's body free by the hand. We hear a sickening crunch. Direct cause for Gideon's Self-Harm.
  • Ax-Crazy: Jakob's first thought when Nier and Weiss, his first customers since his mother left, come to visit, is how to kill them.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: He's had to go through a lot, but Gideon is still a very difficult kid.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Jakob, after their mother left and Gideon was still worried about her even though he did most of the work. He convinced Gideon that robots killed his father, and even boarded up the windows to their home so he only had to worry about Gideon leaving through the front entrance. Not only that, but he even considered the notion of breaking his legs so he wouldn't try and find their mother!
  • Domestic Abuse: Their mother was abused by her husband, and she in turn abused the children.
  • Dub Name Change: Jakob's name is Jiminy in the Japanese game.
  • Freak Out: Gideon, once Beepy is defeated, starts beating it and laughing maniacally, screaming that it makes him feel better.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Jakob pushes Gideon out of the way of some falling debris, and gets crushed to death.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: By the time of Ending E, when Gideon realized the Junk Heap was producing more and more robots each year, he decided to close up shop for good and seal the place as it had become too dangerous for him to stay there, despite his murderous hatred towards the machines living in the ruins. Kainé isn't happy when she reads the note in the door.
    Kainé: The hell is this? "Regarding the closure of the Junk Heap: We've discovered that the number of robots being produced in the Junk Heap has been increasing with each passing year. For safety pirposes, passage beyond this point is now forbidden. -Two Brothers Weaponry" Goddammit. Came all this way for nothing...
  • Mad Scientist: Post-timeskip Gideon ends up this way, creating special weapons to destroy Shades.
  • Mask of Sanity: According to Grimoire Nier, Jakob was quite mentally unstable and even murderous, considering killing both Nier and Weiss and breaking his brother's legs. In the game proper, he's quite good at hiding this, coming off as a gentle and pleasant Nice Guy.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Beepy was nearby when Jakob was crushed. Gideon opted to blame him for Jakob's death, instead of facing up to the fact that it was Gideon's own recklessness that killed Jakob. It wasn't Gideon who came up with the idea of thinking all robots are evil though...
  • Nice Guy: Jakob is a rather pleasant and polite individual, despite the circumstances. Subverted in Grimoire Nier, where it's revealed he was far worse than his brother, who was just hopelessly naïve.
  • Parental Abandonment: Their father died when they were young, and their mother abandoned them to be with the man she loved, who is later implied to have been a con man. Both the mother and her lover were killed in the Junk Heap by Gepetto. It's later implied that their father is alive and now runs the tavern in Seafront.
  • Please Wake Up: Gideon to Jakob. Followed by a Big "NO!".
  • Promotion to Parent: Jakob takes a great deal of care for his younger brother. Weiss suspects that he even gives Gideon both their shares of the food.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Gideon against the Shades, and specifically the P-33 Military Defense Unit known as Beepy.
  • Self-Harm: Gideon begins cutting his arm after Jakob's death. He eventually damages it so badly that he has to amputate it and replace it with a mechanical one.
  • Ultimate Blacksmith: Gideon becomes this after the Time Skip and Beepy is dealt with.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Their mom abandoned them, they found out she died running away with her lover, and then Gideon accidentally caused Jakob's death, followed by him dismembering his brother's corpse trying to pull him out of the debris.

The very Little Mermaid.
Voiced by: Aoi Yūki (JP), Erin Fitzgerald (EN)
''Nobody ever helped me! He's the only one who was ever kind to me! He taught me what kindness is! I ... I will become HUMAN! We'll... We'll speak the same language. And we will stay together!

A cute little girl and the focus of the Grimoire Nier story and side mission "The Little Mermaid".

  • Adaptational Ugliness: Her Shade form was certainly this - the novel implied that she was a giant humanoid with wings. Here, she is a girl encased in an outer shell of a tentacle monster, her humanoid body serving as the tongue of its head - while she sprouts massive amounts of tentacles on her body, some of which form additional faces, with no wings to speak of. She even Lampshades this moments before she dies.
  • All for Nothing: According to Devola, because she has no Replicant body, she would never have the chance to become human, no matter how badly she wanted to.
    • There's a bit of Fridge Logic involved - she already stuffed most of her Shade form inside a Replicant body. Plus, her Replicant and Gestalt data were already saved in the system, if Simone from Automata is anything to go by. There was still a possibility that she could get a body later on.
  • Anti-Villain: Types II and IV. All she ever wanted to do was to be human in order to not relapse into a Shade and succumb to the Black Scrawl. She never understood why eating Replicants was wrong, being a child and all - but she is still puzzled as to why it never worked. However, when the postman sees her in her Shade form and believes her to be a monster, she quickly loses the will to live.
  • Assimilation Backfire: While eating Replicants allowed for a strong and powerful body that could withstand the sun, it was counterproductive to her true goal - to become human enough for the postman to accept her. Instead, it just made her uglier as a Tentacled Terror.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: The source of all its magical power, including her regeneration abilities, is in her head - the humanoid head in the novel, and the monster head in the game proper.
  • Badass Adorable: In a roundabout way. She can't fight at all in her human form, but because she's the giant, near-invincible Shade, she is massive, complete with Blow You Away and many Combat Tentacles. Adding the a giant moving wall of magical projectiles and her own variant of Dark Lance makes her even tougher.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: The postman was the only person who treated her with kindness when she was alone in the shipwreck and starving, so trying to go outside the ship so she could live with him is her driving force in life.
  • Become a Real Girl: This was Louise's true goal. She wanted to regain her humanity so that she and the postman could be together.
  • Body Horror: While she has a humanoid body as a Shade, it's the tongue of a giant mass of tentacles.
  • Call-Forward: Louise is pretty clearly the foundation for Simone's personality - namely, her desire to become human transformed into a desire to become beautiful - all to please one man. Additionally, Simone's cannibalization of the Androids mirror Louise's cannibalization of Replicants, along with possessing a powerful scream that staggers their enemies. Her initial core body was located at the throat area, where both die by having it penetrated by a projectile from a support item - Louise dies from a Dark Lance from Grimoire Weiss at the tentacle throat, and Simone dies from a laser beam from Pod 042 aimed at the machine core at the mechanical throat area.
  • Cute Monster Girl: Even as a giant Shade, she still maintains a small humanoid body that resembles her wholesome, adorable Replicant child form.
  • Cute Mute: Subverted. She can talk, alright, but it's only in Shadespeak - as she's the giant Shade boss. Had she ever succeeded in becoming a complete human, she would be able to finally speak the language of the Replicants and properly thank the postman for his kindness.
  • Despair Event Horizon: She is so heartbroken by the postman's rejection of her that she doesn't even resist when either Kainé or Nier kills her.
    • Defiant to the End: She averts it if she's stunned before she can unleash her shout, fighting Nier and his party to the very end.
  • Determinator: That said, before she loses all hope, Louise was actually doing pretty well for someone who ate many Replicants - she suppressed her relapse for as long as she could, held up her tiny body and her single-mindedness to become human and kill the party allowed for an absurd Healing Factor for her giant tentacle Shade form and after she went One-Winged Angel, regenerating limbs and other wounds even against direct sunlight, the weakness of many Shades. And all this time, even in her giant form, she retained rational thought until her dying moments. Girl's a tough breadcrumb for someone initially presented as weak and sickly!
  • Dies Differently in Adaptation: In the novel, Kainé chops her head off while she's distraught (implied to be the humanoid head, a.k.a the monster's tongue). That said, it's zigzagged all over in the game proper.
    • The default attack (should the party remain concussed from Louise's song) has Nier simply fire a Dark Lance at her Shade head - that is, the monster's maw that holds her humanoid body, causing her to be disintegrated from the base of that head. Should players strike Louise when she performs her singing attack, she will topple over, defenceless, allowing Nier to close the distance towards the humanoid body and finish her off face-to-face.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Unlike other Shades, who fall over when they die or show visible agony and rage as they perish, Louise simply laments her hideous form and stares into the horizon as she disintegrates.
  • Fairy Tale Motifs: Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid. She's presented as a delicate little girl found in a shipwreck who appears to be mute. But as the Shade boss, she represents the Sea Witch, armed with octopus-like tentacles. This also ties into her dream to become human, so that she can spend her life with the postman who treated her kindly. Both the Mermaid and Louise also desire to see the sun's beauty, which is a weakness for many Shades. When she finally dies, her body disintegrates and is scattered to the skies and into the afterlife, much like the Mermaid, never to return to the one man who gave her a reason to live.
  • Foil:
    • To Yonah. As a sickly looking girl trying to stave off the Black Scrawl, she receives kindness from a man that considers her family. However, unlike Yonah, who had to deal with two warring minds in one body, Louise has a singular will in a possession (or an imperfect fusion) An inability to communicate in the Replicants' tongue is part of her downfall. And while Yonah was loved and mourned by Nier, the postman still hates her guts after her death and learning the truth about her.
    • Also to Kainé. They're both Replicants that contain Gestalts within their bodies, with the ability to appear the most human as Shades and perform magic. They also hide dark secrets about their true nature.
  • Foreshadowing: See the Black Scrawl on her right arm? It's proof that she is the giant tentacled Shade in the story. Her unique nature as a transforming Shade possessing a tiny body also foreshadows in retrospect, Kainé's ending in C and D.
  • Healing Factor: Up to Eleven - she regenerates severed limbs and recovers from severe blood loss of a giant, Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever Tentacled Terror, simultaneously in broad daylight, where she would definitely be burned by the sun.
  • Giant Equals Invincible: Her true form is the biggest Shade in the game, and is also by a wide margin the hardest to put down. Cutting off her limbs, blasting her in the head and even slicing her into four pieces isn’t enough to take her down as her regenerative abilities nullify it. It takes either a sustained assault on her core or a Dark Lance through the skull depending on how the fight goes to finally put her down, and even then she remains alive long enough to lament her fate.
  • Ill Girl: When she is first seen, the postman assumes she's this, with her cough, fragile limbs, and tiny body. However, it's the complete opposite. She's actually the giant tentacled Shade - she's not sick, just strained by the effort of eating so many Replicants, forcing all of them down inside her small Replicant body for as long as she could. On top of all that, her Shade form is nigh invincible, has a near-endless supply of magical attacks, has an absurd Healing Factor that allows her to regenerate severed limbs, is a giant Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever that goes One-Winged Angel, and most importantly, is resistant to sunlight just like the Shadowlord. Underestimating her is a terrible idea.
  • I Just Want To Be Human: As the giant Shade boss, this is the very motivation - the crux of her story. Having eaten many Replicant bodies to try and become human, she states this all so that she could properly live with the postman who treated her kindly. Unfortunately, as she is the giant Shade boss, this all ends up as a Tragic Dream.
  • Irony: Her desire to become human by eating Replicants ended up making her into a hideous, ugly Tentacled Terror, that helped sour the party and the postman's opinion of her as a monster, as opposed to a small, defenceless-looking child Shade.
  • The Juggernaut: Let's count all the ways. She's a giant, Multi-Armed and Dangerous monster made of endless Combat Tentacles. She has an absurd Healing Factor that can regenerate cells at an alarming rate, to the point where she reattaches limbs while simultaneously being burned at the sun while looking no worse for wear. Her many arms fire barrages of magical orbs, and can unleash a Flechette Storm from the spikes on her body ... leading to Stuff Blowing Up. She also has a singing attack that would literally Blow You Away from the sheer volume of her power. Popola even once considered using her strength to force the Shadowlord to comply with their plan!
  • Kaiju: Her true form is the biggest Shade in the entire game, beating out Hook, Wendy and even Knave of Hearts.
  • Leitmotif: "Fleeting Words" and its many variations.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout/Musical Assassin: In her Shade form, she can unleash massive magic-powered song shouts from her humanoid body. Her song blasts are immensely powerful. Near the end of her boss fight, she tries to fire a massive one that will knock everyone senseless if she isn't stunned in time.
  • Meaningful Name: Louise means "famous warrior" in Archaic German. It ties to just how dangerous she is as a powerful giant Shade.
  • Morphic Resonance: Her Shade humanoid form resembles her child body wearing a dress, complete with the bow the postman gave her. It's a sign that the more human Shades like her looks, the more powerful they are, just like the Shadowlord later on in the story.
  • Motive Rant: Her reason for being the enemy and attacking the party? She's despairing how no one else but the postman showed her kindness, and so she's trying to become a human to be with him forever - even if it means eating Replicant bodies in a botched attempt to merge back into a complete being and stave off the Black Scrawl.
    Louise: It didn't matter how many people I ate! I was never satisfied! Nobody ever helped me! He's the only one who was ever kind to me! He taught me what kindness is! I... I will become HUMAN! We'll... We'll speak the same language. And we will stay together!
  • Named by the Adaptation: She was originally a nameless girl in the story, while here, she's named Louise.
  • No Body Left Behind:Once she dies, her body turns into black sand which disintegrates into the wind.
  • No-Sell: She's so strong that she completely resists the beam Emil fired at her.
  • Off with Her Head!: How Kainé finally kills her - at least in the novel. In the remake, Nier tries this, punching her head off with a Dark Hand, but it makes her enter her One-Winged Angel form when she pulls herself back together.
  • One-Winged Angel: In Grimoire Nier, Her cephalopod form burned away in direct sunlight ... only to generate a humanoid form with giant wings. It doubles as a Bishoujo Line, creating a beautiful, winged humanoid female Shade. In the remake, when Nier punches her head off with a Dark Hand, her squid-like body grows even bigger and stronger, becoming as tall as a skyscraper.
  • Poor Communication Kills: In classic Yoko Taro fashion. Afraid that the postman would reject her Shade self, she keeps it a complete secret. Afraid that the party was trying to kill her and take the postman away from her, she attacks the party.
  • Progressively Prettier: The novel implied that she was wearing rags, but here, she has a distinguishable dress and boots.
  • Refitted for Sequel: Originally, she would have been in the original game were it not for time and graphic constraints, making this Refitted For the Remaster. Her story then was relegated to a side fable in Grimoire Nier, before making her first proper in-game appearance in the remastered version of Replicant.
  • Slashed Throat: Aiming projectiles at the monster throat connecting her humanoid body to the mass of tentacles is key to defeating her in the game proper. She either dies from a One-Hit Kill Dark Lance that drills through the throat, or she is weakened and topples over, allowing Nier to attack her humanoid form directly and finish her off there.
  • Tentacled Terror: Yeah, a cute little girl turns into a giant tentacle monster Shade.
  • Tragic Monster: It turns out that Louise is the giant, tentacled Shade attacking everyone. And all she wanted to do is to become human so that she could successfully reunite and live together with the postman. She even asks why she becomes a Shade and loses the will to live when even the postman calls her a monster the moment he sees her in her Shade form.
  • The Unintelligible: From the perspective of Nier and in the first playthrough. Once the player goes through New Game+, she can actually be understood like all the other Shades they fight, leading to ...
  • Voice of the Legion: This is what her voice sounds like to Kainé. It's justified because she's a singular consciousness - a Shade within her tiny Replicant body. She's a particularly impressive case seeing as other Shades like Goose and the Shadowlord sound unintelligible, while here, the player hears her voice clearly and translated, albeit distorted, much like Kainé at the end of the game. It's averted for tragedy in the third playthrough, where her child's voice is the most noticeable and the least distorted - making it painfully clear that the party is hurting a scared child.
  • Walking Spoiler: For the remastered game, anyways. Readers of the Grimoire Nier novella already know who she is and what happens to her in the story.
  • What Have I Become?: After realizing she is the ugly, man-eating Shade and will never earn the postman's love again, she loses all hope of ever achieving her goal to become human, and resigns herself to her death, either by Kainé in the original story, or by Nier and Weiss in the remake.
  • Winged Humanoid: As the battle progresses in the novel, her Shade form evolves into a giant humanoid over ten meters tall from head to torso sporting many pairs of wings with a hundred meter long wingspan.

    Halua aka No. 6
Click here to see what she looked like before see was transformed 
Voiced by: Ayaka Suwa (JP), Lizzie Freeman (EN)

Emil's older twin sister, a child used in the ultimate weapon project designated as No.6.

  • Achilles' Heel: Though she's highly resistant to melee weapons and very adept at magic, Halua is actually quite vulnerable to magic. It ends up being what ultimately defeats her.
  • Adaptation Expansion: Replicant ver 1.22 gives more scenes with her and Emil, which explain their history and connection.
  • And I Must Scream: Halua's been stuck on that wall for 1444 years, as the remodelling process that turned her into a Living Weapon drove her insane.
  • Big Sister Instinct: Most of her actions can be seen as this, from her sacrifice to become No.6 instead of her brother up to and including swallowing Emil whole. It's implied Emil's berserker bouts in the Aerie and the Shadowlord's castle were Halua taking over to save his life.
  • Body Horror: The "remodeling" turned her into a skeletal beast with immense magical powers. Unfortunately, a combination of the horrific pain of the process and her fears of Emil being harmed drove her mad. She ended up devastating the lab, which led to her being chained down to a wall and sealed off for over a millenium.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Nier finishes her off that way, firing a large Dark Lance right between her eyes after pinning her to the wall again with smaller Dark Lances.
  • Cool Big Sis: She was this to her twin, Emil.
  • Driven to Madness: By the remodeling process that made her No. 6 to begin with.
  • Fusion Dance: After Nier defeats her, she willingly merges with Emil, promising to always watch over him.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: In her No. 6 form, her eyes glow a bright red.
  • No-Sell: Melee attacks do jack squat to her, fizzling out in a tiny purple shockwave on the place she's hit.
  • Parental Abandonment: In one of Emil's flashbacks, he explains that he and Halua's parents died in an accident.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: She was turned into an Ultimate Weapon by the scientists, but proved to be too unstable, so Emil was a failsafe in case she went out of control.
  • Really 700 Years Old: She was alive before the Shadowlord existed, becoming a Project Snow White weapon in 2026. By the time of the game, she's around 1,400 years old.
  • Taking the Bullet: Emil was the one originally intended to be No. 6, not Halua. When she realized Emil would endure horrific pain during the "remodeling" process that would transform him, Halua took his place on her own volition. Unfortunately, it was All for Nothing in the end, as Emil was also turned into a Living Weapon... to be used against her.

    Grimoire Noir
Voiced by: Fumihiko Tachiki (JP), D.C. Douglas (EN)

Weiss's dark counterpart.

  • Baleful Polymorph: As revealed in And Then There Were None, he wasn't always a Grimoire. He was a human turned into one in 2033, alongside Weiss and Rubrum.
  • Dub Name Change: Known as "Hon Kuro" or "Kuro no Sho", the Black Book in Japanese.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Weiss and he is the potential savior of humanity, just pointlessly smug and evil about it.
  • Evil Knockoff: Project Gestalt created several copies of him to turn people into Gestalts/Shades. Unfortunately, they were flawed and those who touched such books would quickly relapse and go mad. The original Noir was apparently the only one who could create "perfect" Gestalts that wouldn't relapse.
  • Gold-Colored Superiority: His magic is golden and a dark red. Most noticeable with the shield he forms around himself.
  • Misanthrope Supreme: He apparently wants to govern humanity and views himself as above them.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He's tasked with initiating the process of mass implantation of Gestalts into Replicants by fusing with Weiss and unleashing their combined power to restore "true humanity". While his goal is rather noble in that context, he still behaves like a complete scumbag who's largely unconcerned with other entities' suffering, injuring Nier to keep him from reaching Yonah and viciously taunting him and Weiss.

    Grimoire Rubrum
A book similar to Weiss (but instead with red pages) that attacks the party in the library. Unlike Weiss, this behaves in a very animalistic manner.
  • Ax-Crazy: But then again, she didn't retain any of her human character unlike Weiss or Noir. It could be explained by her being fused to it post-mortem, as she was already dead when Grimoire Rubrum absorbed her.
  • Baleful Polymorph: As revealed in the short story And Then There Were None from the supplementary material Grimoire Nier, she wasn't always a Grimoire.
  • Child Soldiers: From Grimoire Nier as part of the Hamelin Organization. Justified in that the luciferase medicine capable of somewhat protecting against White Chlorination Syndrome performs better in younger subjects.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Along with Grimoire Weiss and Noir, she was also a nameless Child Soldier recruited by the Hamelin Organisation to fight the Legions. Agreeing to one final 'special mission' in the hopes of leaving the organization, she was put into a Forced Prize Fight and sucked into a magic book for her troubles.
  • Defeat Equals Explosion: When she's defeated, she explodes in a cloud of pages.
  • Dub Name Change: Known as "Hon Shinku" or "Shinku no Sho", the Crimson Book in Japanese.
  • Forgotten Friend, New Foe: In-game, neither Rubrum nor Weiss recognize each other from their previous two encounters in which they saved each other's lives.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In her backstory she pays back the favor a 16-year-old Weiss gave her on the battlefield by pushing him out of the way of Noir's attack, and becomes trapped inside a crimson book for eternity. Sadly, it's a Senseless Sacrifice in that Weiss suffers the same fate in the end.
  • Silent Antagonist: It's unknown whether she's The Voiceless or The Speechless, but she exchanges no words in-game unlike Grimoires Weiss and Noir.

    The Administrators (SPOILERS)
Boy voiced by: Natsuki Hanae (JP), Kyle McCarley (EN)
Girl voiced by: Yui Ishikawa (JP), Kira Buckland (EN)

The administrators of the Forest of Myth, and the lead antagonists of the Ending E path.

  • Adaptation Expansion: In Grimoire Nier, the administrator is just one individual. However, in the Replicant remaster, it's comprised of a boy and a girl.
  • Ambiguously Evil: It's never made clear if they were outright antagonistic towards Kainé or if they were simply testing her potential, as they claim.
  • Boss Bonanza: They subject Kainé to a minor version of this, starting with a few random Shades, then Beepy/Kalil, followed by Gretel, and ending with Hook.
  • Creepy Twins: They often appear together and their presence give off an eerie vibe.
  • Expy: Of N2 a.k.a. the red girls from Automata, or Parrah and Noya from SINoALICE. Appearance-wise they also resemble 2B and 9S, right down to their voice actors in both languages.
  • Kill All Humans: They are responsible for sending a group of robots to kill the inhabitants of the forest.
  • Leitmotif: "Analogous Memories" plays whenever they show up.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: As Kainé fights off her duplicates, the administrators point out to her how she killed the original Gestalt, a.k.a. the Shadowlord, and how this led to not only many Gestalts relapsing, but also the deaths of countless Replicants, even though players will know this was all technically Nier's fault.
  • No Name Given: They're only known as 'Boy' and 'Girl' in the credits. They do introduce themselves to Kainé, but their names are incomprehensible.
  • Oh, Crap!: Their reaction when the combined forces of Kainé and a spectral Grimoire Weiss defeat Memory Hook.
  • Send in the Clones: They manage to create several Kainé copies from the time she still wielded her twin blades.
    Boy: You are strong. We have taken the liberty of sampling that strength.
    Girl: We reproduced you from the point in your journey in which you were strongest.
    Kainé: Son of a... Are those things me!?
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Kainé attempts this on the pair when she wordlessly cuts them down before they can finish introducing themselves, but they reappear as soon as she does.
  • Walking Spoiler: As with Louise, their existence is this for the Replicant remaster, but those who read Grimoire Nier will know their role in the storyline.

The Shades

    In General 
  • Always Chaotic Evil: What mostly everyone believes they are to the world, but only the relapsed shades count and even then those shades lost any kind of rational thought.
  • Black Speech: They talk in a language no one besides other shades can understand.
  • Daylight Horror: They can't stand being out in broad daylight, but after the Time Skip, the Shades start sporting armor that allows them to walk during the day mostly unaffected.
  • Dub Name Change: In the Japanese version they are referred to as "Mamono", which can be translated as "monsters" or "demons".
  • Doomed by Canon: Per the events of Automata, no shades make it after the fall of the Shadowlord.
  • It Can Think: At first they are assumed to lack any sort of intelligence, but after gaining armor not to mention other forms of defense that idea quickly is dismissed.
  • Theme Naming: The major Shade bosses are named after various fairy tale characters such as Wendy or Hook.

Click here to see what he looks like. (SPOILERS) 
"Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill!"
Voiced by: Showtaro Morikubo (JP), Spike Spencer (EN)

A Shade that possessed Kainé when she was young. Despite giving her superhuman strength and healing powers, he threatens to take over her completely someday if she ever "goes soft". He's also insane.

  • Ax-Crazy: It comes with being a disembodied Shade. Although even as Masayoshi Yura he was insanely ruthless.
  • Bishounen: His human form in his younger days. He was muscular, had long dark hair and a blue eye (he'd lost his left eye in battle and wore an eyepatch)
  • Blood Knight: The above quote should be enough to convince you.
  • Dirty Coward: Supplemental material and Drama CD suggests that before humanity collectively had used the Gestalt project, he was dishonorably discharged when he ran away during an isolated incident after using the berserk Emil against the Red Eye during the defense of Kali's mansion, costing the lives of his army during the crossfire and nearly getting a war hero killed. As punishment, his Replicant was destroyed after his identity was rediscovered.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: In Endings C & D, it's implied that despite constantly taunting and tormenting her, he did care about Kainé in his own way. After all, he was acquainted with her grandmother long prior to the story, according to the Drama CD.
  • Evil Laugh: He finds murder hilarious, so his laughter falls into this.
  • Evil Is Hammy: Even when just talking normally he has an eccentric undertone in his voice. And once he starts screaming outright, the ham busts out.
    Tyrann: I'm gonna swallow you up, Sunshine! M'GUNNA SWALLOW YOU WHOLE!
    Tyrann: Well, hell, Sunshine, It's not like I can stop it! When Gestalts go out of control, they lose their minds!
  • Faux Affably Evil: He's a smooth-talking wise guy with a sick yet hilarious sense of humor.
  • Foil: To Grimoire Weiss. Both were former humans who were turned into what they are currently by a government project, are centuries old as a result of their disembodied forms, and give powerful magic to their respective hosts. But while Weiss is a eloquently spoken, snobbish Jerk with a Heart of Gold with a huge ego to match, Tyrann is a crude Faux Affably Evil Sociopath who delights in having Kainé slaughter his fellow Shades. Though, in the end, both care about their partners deep down enough to sacrifice their lives to help them.
  • General Ripper: When he was human.
  • Grand Theft Me: Tyrann shacked up in Kainé's dying body and will take over the other half of her brain if she comes close to death.
    • His history reveals that this is his Modus Operandi since his Replicant and its data were destroyed by his former bosses in the military due to his desertion and nearly getting the war hero Kali killed by a Red Eye and he's therefore bodiless. He's done this to several other Replicants, ultimately destroying them in the process. Kainé is the exception.
  • Hates Everyone Equally: Say what you will about Tyrann, but he isn't a bigot, and is fully willing to kill other Shades.
    Tyrann: What, ya think I'm some kind of racist? Some killing snob? I don't give a good goddamn who ya murder, honeypants. I just wanna drink from the well.
  • In Love with Your Carnage: He gets very... "excited" when Kainé kills other Shades. A short story in Grimoire Nier hints that this has the expected effect on her unique body.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Despite being a colossal asshole, Tyrann does give sound advice to Kainé from time to time. Most noticeable with the battle against Louise, as he realized Louise was in love with the postman, and suggested Kainé to take him as a hostage to distract her. Kainé was left with little choice but to listen to him, as Louise's extreme regeneration made her nearly unkillable unless she left herself exposed.
  • Heel–Face Turn: In Endings C & D, Tyrann helps Nier save Kainé.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: The two options that he gives Nier both result in his death.
  • Hidden Depths: Kainé points out during the Goose fight that, like her, he has suffered a lot of pain and sorrow, but uses Ax-Crazy tendencies to hide it.
  • Meaningful Name: It's German for 'tyrant'.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: He goes through this in Endings C & D. Turns out that he actually did care for Kainé after all.
    "Wait... No. No, no, no! It wasn't fun at all! I turned you into a killing machine! I spread evil and chaos around the world! But it all feels so empty now! Why!? I don't understand!"
  • "Not So Different" Remark: During the fight with Goose, Kainé eventually realizes that both of them are hate-filled individuals beyond saving who rely on violence to dull their pain, which is what begins his Heel Realization.
    Tyrann: Kaaah hah hah! Oh, you pissed her off now! Maybe you shouldn't have killed her friends. Look at her, so full of scorn and hate! She's just like you, Sunshine! Haaahahahaha!
    Kainé: Like you're any different.
    Tyrann: Eh?
    Kainé: Hate is just another crutch for you.
    Tyrann: Hey now...
    Kainé: You're in pain, you're lonely, no one likes you. So you try to hide it under violence and hate.
    Tyrann: I'm not like that at all!
    Kainé: It's okay.
    Tyrann: It is?
    Kainé: Look, I'm the same way.
    Tyrann: ......
    Kainé: But just realizing that isn't going to help. It's too late for us now. It's too late for everything. We're too far gone, you and me. That's why we-
  • Old Soldier: An ex-military deserter who fought against the Legion and still lives on over fourteen centuries later.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: When fighting the Shade boss Louise from the extra episode Mermaid, he is so terrified that he loses his hammy demeanor and takes her very seriously, outright giving Kainé direct advice and telling her how she needs to listen or they are all going to die.
  • The Symbiote: Inhabiting a human body makes his powers stronger, and in turn, gives Kainé the ability to use magic and regenerate lethal wounds.
  • Terms of Endangerment: Calls Kainé "Sunshine" and various other lewd nicknames, just to get on her nerves.

    Hansel and Gretel
From left to right: Hansel, and Gretel
A pair of statues that guard Grimoire Weiss in the Lost Temple.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Nier impales Gretel's arm against a wall with Dark Lance, severing it entirely and causing Gretel to momentarily faint.
  • Eye Scream: How Hansel dies.
  • Japanese Beetle Brothers: Type A, with Hansel as the one-horned, blue-eyed rhinoceros beetle; and Gretel as the two-horned, red-eyed stag beetle.
  • Dual Boss: Nier fights them at the same time in the Lost Temple.
  • The Power of Friendship: An injured Gretel swears to protect his new friends - a small group of Shades that he once mocked - from Nier and his party, all to no avail.
  • Villainous Valour: Even without an arm, Gretel still opposes Nier till the very end.

A unique wolf Shade who patrols the desert of Façade along with his pack.
  • A Father to His Men: He loved his pack as his own family, and when the People of the Mask slaughtered most of them, he crossed his Rage Breaking Point and killed their king's fiancée, Fyra.
  • A Tragedy of Impulsiveness: His desire to avenge the forest's destruction and the slaughter of his pack led to the King of Façade and his men killing every last one of them in retribution for Fyra's death. He realized this and asked what remained of his pack to flee somewhere safe, but they decided to stay and fight by his side until the bitter end.
  • Hellhound: He certainly looks like one, being a muscular and bulky wolf Shade.
  • Humans Are Bastards: Roc became a firm believer of this when the People of the Mask started to destroy the forest he called his home. He and his pack tried to drive them away, but when most of them were killed, it drove him over the edge. His father was the only exception.
    Roc: "You raped our forests and poisoned our streams, and now you slaughter our young! We will abide your existence no longer, mankind! You will atone for your sins with blood!"
    Roc: "We will never forgive you, Humans! There shall never be peace between us!"
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: He dies this way, killed by the King of Façade. Combined with Eye Scream, as the spear went through his head all the way through his chest and the floor.
  • Interspecies Adoption: He was once a dog adopted by an old man. Roc loved the man like his grandfather and he loved him back, to the point he sacrificed his spot in Project Gestalt for him, which gave Roc immortality as a Gestalt/Shade. In his final moments, Roc saw the man once more.
  • Last of His Kind: Roc is the last of the wolf pack to die, and implied to be the last of the wolves period. If you return to the desert after killing him, the previously-roaming wolves are no longer there, instead replaced by Shades.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: After killing Fyra, he realizes that he has inadvertently ensured the destruction of his pack.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Despite his dislike of humanity, he ended up consumed by a desire for vengeance as much as the King of Façade.
    King of Façade: Horrid beast! Die! We cannot know peace as long as you draw breath!
    Roc: Those were my very words, Human!
  • Talking Animal: Roc is able to speak and is fully capable of understanding humans, including the people of Façade. He's also The Unintelligible due to being a Shade until a NG+ run.
  • Wolfpack Boss: One that goes both ways: Roc and his pack against the King of Façade, a few men of his and Nier and co.

Voiced by: Mari Yokoo (JP), Wendee Lee (EN)

The fearsome lizard-like shade responsible for Kainé's home being destroyed.

  • Fog of Doom: In the last stages of its fight, it vomits a poisonous mist on Kainé, in an attempt to hypnotize her.
  • Hate Sink: It not only sadistically murders Kainé's grandmother and manipulates Kainé with her voice, but by doing so, it helped contribute to Kainé not trusting Shades enough to try and translate the Shades' speech and mediating many a preventable conflict that would've saved both Replicants and Gestalts, and by extension, the human race. That's why, when Kainé confronts her memories in Ending E, she and Weiss get to pummel a memory of it repeatedly with Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs using Dark Hand.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: A massive lizard-like Shade, and quite a piece of shit.
  • It Can Think: It's immensely intelligent and capable of speech, not just Shadespeak, but Replicant speech.
  • Prehensile Tail: It has an actual hand-like appendage on the tip of its tail. It's big enough to grab one of the Aerie's houses.
  • Token Evil Teammate: The only intelligent Shade without any sympathetic aspect to it, partly attributable to being fought pre-timeskip, whose Shades are never given any humanizing moments. That aside, judging by everything it does onscreen, and especially given its role in Kainé's backstory, it seems to just be a sadistic monster.
  • True Final Boss: A memory of Hook serves as one for Ending E and, by extension, the entire game.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Sadistic monster though it may be, it probably wasn't its intention to instill Kainé with an acute distrust of Shades that would lead her to refuse to translate the Shades' speech, which in turn would lead to the mess of miscommunication that would lead Nier to accidentally trigger the extinction of the human race.
  • Voice Changeling: When it poisons Kainé, it imitates Kali's voice in an attempt to make her lower her guard so it can eat her. Its trick fails because Kali would've never told Kainé to give up in living.

    Knave of Hearts
A gigantic bipedal Shade that attacked Nier's village, causing a string of events that change his life forever.
  • Advancing Boss of Doom: He heads towards the library to kill everyone in the village, and it's Nier's job to take him down before he gets there.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: He's immensely tall, easily stepping over large hills.
  • Healing Factor: He can regrow his limbs if they're separated from the body.
  • Implacable Man: No matter what Nier and his party throw at him, he refuses to die. It takes a period of five years and Kainé's sacrifice to finally take him down.
  • Knight of Cerebus: His arrival heralds a darker turn for the game, with a chain of events that significantly alter Nier’s life and lead him to become more ruthless over the next five years.
  • Neck Snap: How it finally dies - by Nier using Dark Hand to strangle it to death, to the point it bleeds.

A child Shade that lives in the Junk Heap and befriended a P-33 unit.
  • Affectionate Nickname: He nicknamed a P-33 unit "Beepy". The robot would later adopt it as his own name, and his experiences alongside Kalil made him sentient.
  • Anticlimax Boss: Most of his bossfight is against Beepy himself: Kalil goes down easily compared to the robot.
  • Cute, but Cacophonic: In the original version, Kalil's voice was quite shrill. It was toned down in the 1.22... remake.
  • Death of a Child: After Beepy is defeated, he tries to fight Nier's party in a Last Stand. Unfortunately, being a simple child Shade, he was unable to do much against them and was quickly cut down.
  • Dub Name Change: He's named "Cleo", or rather, "クレオ (Kureo)" in Japanese.
  • Heartwarming Orphan: So heartwarming he gave a military weapon a heart and mind of his own.
  • Me's a Crowd: Kalil creates several copies of himself in a last desperate attempt to stop Nier. It's not enough.
  • Robot Buddy: Befriended a P-33 robot, which he named "Beepy."
  • Small Role, Big Impact: His relationship with Beepy proved key to foiling the alien invasion of Earth millenia later, as Beepy shared his love for Kalil and the rest of humanity with the Machines.

Voiced by: Hiroki Yasumoto (JP), Robbie Daymond (EN)

A P-33 unit that befriended Kalil.

  • The Assimilator: His self-repair units give him the ability to absorb scrap into himself to upgrade his body. They're also what ultimately save his life.
  • Benevolent A.I.: All he wants is to travel the world alongside Kalil. After repairing himself, he'd share his love for humanity with the alien Machines that were invading the Earth. It moved them so much the Machines fell in love with humanity and its emotions, and they Turned Against Their Masters and destroyed them due to their nearly nonexistent emotions.
  • Determinator: Beepy will do everything to protect Kalil, even if it kills him.
  • Electronic Speech Impediment: The more damage he suffers during his fight, his words start stuttering and he starts having errors.
  • Grew Beyond Their Programming: He was once a normal P-33 unit that guarded the Junk Heap. Being with Kalil made him develop a mind of his own and a desire to protect him.
  • I Can Still Fight!: Despite the damage he'd taken throughout the fight with Nier's party, Beepy refused to stop fighting, as he sought to protect Kalil at all costs.
    Beepy: Exterminating... ing... ing... ing... ing...
    Kalil: Beepy, stop! That's enough! You're gonna be destroyed if you keep fighting!
    Beepy: Must. Defend. My. Mission...
    Kalil: No! I can't live without you! I don't wanna be alone again!
  • Killer Robot: A military robot built during humanity's final days. Unlike others, he developed a mind of his own.
  • Mis-blamed: Gideon blames him and Kalil for Jakob's death, when in fact what killed him was an accident Gideon caused.
  • Not Quite Dead: Beepy survived his encounter with Nier's party and ultimately repaired himself around 2200 years later.
  • Power Gives You Wings: In the last stage of his boss fight, Beepy absorbs some of the surrounding scrap and builds a pair of metal wings with jets in a last attempt to flee the Junk Heap and save himself and Kalil.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: While in this game he's simply another boss that needs to be taken down, but he turns out to be the catalyst of repelling an alien invasion, as he shares his love for humanity with alien machines, causing them to turn against their alien masters and destroy them.

Click here to see its in-game appearance. 
The sphere-looking shade fought in the Aerie once it sucks up all the villagers.
  • Combat Tentacles: The shade uses them for both attacks and can also deflect your attacks.
  • Faceless Eye: It only has one giant eye that serves as a weakpoint.
  • Voice of the Legion: The villagers of the Aerie all speak in a confused state after being sucked into Wendy.

A boar-like Shade who guards the Shadowlord's Castle.
  • Full-Boar Action: It takes the form of a boar the size of a truck.
  • Fusion Dance: The Boar Shade was formed from a caretaker Shade merging with defenseless Shade children to both survive and take down the protagonists!
  • Healing Factor: Every time she's knocked down, she fully regenerates her health. Her armor protects her vital parts, leaving the party unable to kill her.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Goose ultimately turns out impossible to destroy by the party and leaves them exhausted, forcing them to flee. It ultimately falls to the King of Façade and his bodyguards, at the cost of their lives.
  • It Can Think: Unlike most Shades who fuse together, Goose is pretty sophisticated - she speaks formally even in a fused boar form, and retains plenty of rational thought till' her dying moment. The only reason why players were inclined to think otherwise was because of her aggressive ramming attacks, fuelled by her single-minded determination to attack the party.
  • Mama Bear: New Game+ reveals that Goose was originally a mother Shade who was outraged at the party's murder of her defenseless (though not harmless) Shade children stuck in blob form. After going through a Fusion Dance to become Goose, she rampages out of vengeance, before going down, but not before pulling a Taking You with Me with the King of Façade and his men.
  • Mutual Kill: With Sechs, the King of Façade - he impales her with his spear, while she gores him to death, killing him with the blunt force trauma of her ramming attack.
  • Non-Indicative Name: As one can tell by simply looking at her, she's not actually a goose.
  • This Is Unforgivable!: Once the mother Shade fuses with her children to become the boar-like Goose, she utters this ad verbatim to the party, before Kainé rebuts her.

    The Shadowlord
The mysterious main villain, who has power over all other Shades. He is accompanied by Grimore Noir and looks almost identical to Nier; he also has a connection with Yonah that leads him to kidnap her.
  • Anti-Villain: He's a Type IV.
  • Big Bad: According to legend. But he's not.
  • Big "NO!": After Gestalt Yonah voluntarily leaves her Replicant's body. Complete with appropriate camera angles. In the Japanese version, it's a Skyward Scream.
  • Bishōnen Line: He's the most powerful Shade and the most human in appearance. This is actually Up To Eleven with the Brother Nier version as he's actually a Bishōnen.
  • Cosmic Keystone: His existence is what lets the Shades, or, rather, the non-relapsed Gestalts, keep their sanity and human awareness.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He looks like a dark angel but his power keeps humanity alive, and even his goal is rather sympathetic.
  • Death Seeker: He becomes this once his Yonah destroys herself for good, only continuing the assault on Nier in hopes of dying by his hand and reuniting with her.
  • Decoy Protagonist: He's the Nier from the prologue and is briefly controllable for the combat tutorial. However, his Replicant becomes the main character afterward.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Crosses this hard when his version of Yonah sacrifices herself; at this point, his goal during the fight with Nier changes from "save my daughter/sister at any cost" to Suicide by Cop.
  • Evil Counterpart: His motives and personality are not that different from Nier's, but the latter always tried helping people if he could, despite his daughter/sister suffering, while the former abducted someone's daughter/sister to keep her alive and doesn't seem to care about anyone else; most notably, he doesn't lift a finger to protect his fellow Shades when Nier and co. breach his castle.
  • Fisticuffs Boss: The third phase of his battle, he puts Weiss out of commission, stealing your magic.
  • Final Boss: He's the final opponent of Endings A and B. But Endings C, D and E carry on after his defeat.
  • The Heavy: As the guy in charge of the Shades, but his kidnapping Yonah is the focus of the main plot after the Time Skip.
  • Living Battery: His successful transformation into a Gestalt means that the Project can continuously "harvest" his unique essence in order to prevent the relapse of other, less refined Gestalts.
  • Maou the Demon King: He's called "魔王 (Maō)" (Demon King) in the original Japanese and seemingly fits the bill, being the evil overlord of the monstrous Shades that are terrorizing the world. This is ultimately heavily subverted when it turns that he and Nier basically want the same thing (Yonah's safety), and if everything had gone to plan humanity would have been saved. By killing him, Nier and his friends doomed humanity to a gradual extinction.
  • No Sympathy: His kidnapping of Replicant Yonah to save her Gestalt/Shade and trapping her in an And I Must Scream situation garners nothing but disgust from Nier when the Shadowlord breaks down after Gestalt Yonah dies.
    Shadowlord: Yonah? Why?
    Nier: You want me to understand your sadness? You think I'm gonna sympathize with you?
    Shadowlord: But why?!
    Nier: I swore to protect my sister/daughter and my friends. If someone puts them in danger, they must stand aside or be cut down! Now COME ON! Let's finish this!
  • Orcus on His Throne: Was willing to wait for 1300 years, believing in Project Gestalt's promise that it would one day restore his Yonah to him. When he finally loses patience and kidnaps Yonah, he then goes back to doing nothing, even as Nier comes ever closer to finding him.
  • Shadow Archetype: He is basically a living incarnation of Nier's worst traits.
  • Supernatural Gold Eyes: Like other Shades.
  • Super Prototype: Not only was he the first and only 100% successful Gestalt subject, he also gained superhuman powers that go beyond his contract with Grimoire Noir or any other Shade's abilities.
  • Supervillain Lair: Lives in a hidden castle somewhere that can only be located using the Keystone. He rarely leaves, so Nier and co. decide to go to him.
  • The Unintelligible: Talks in Shadespeak, natch.
  • Villainous Breakdown: When Gestalt Yonah destroys herself. The only part that viewers can understand verbally, however, is his Big "NO!", at least until they go through subsequent runs of the game.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He's the original incarnation of Nier. Thus, he's just as willing to do anything to get what he wants, including kill another man's daughter/sister to save his own.
  • What You Are in the Dark: He basically embodies this for Nier.
  • Winged Humanoid: Has four moth-like wings capable of flight.