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The World of Remnant: Solitas
Remnant is a harsh landscape inhabited by the Creatures of Grimm that dominate the skies, land and oceans. There were once many kingdoms scattered across the continents of Sanus, Solitas and Anima. However, most have fallen to the Grimm, leaving behind only four survivors. By combining technological advancement with local topography, civilisation flourishes within the protected boundaries of these four kingdoms.
Solitas is the most northerly continent, a harsh, ice-cold environment that both humans and Grimm find difficult to cope with. As a result of the inhospitable conditions, human civilisation and technological understanding has advanced swiftly and the continent boasts the youngest kingdom in the world, the Kingdom of Atlas, which was created out of the more ancient Kingdom of Mantle.
Kingdom of Atlas
The Kingdom of Atlas is located in the south of Solitas and to the north-east of the old Kingdom of Mantle.
As a result of the technological innovation produced as a result of the pressures of the Great War, a decision was made to use Alsius Academy as the site for R&D research and military headquarters. As a result of the growing success and prosperity, the administrative capital was moved away from Mantle. Alsius Academy was renamed Atlas Academy, and the Kingdom of Atlas was born.
Now Atlas floats above the icy surface of Solitas, a gleaming jewel in the sky that is nicknamed 'the City of Dreams'. Meanwhile, Mantle remains grounded in the ruins of the old kingdom and wreathed by the smoke of the mines Atlas left behind. Broken and impoverished, Mantle has become increasingly resentful of the luxury it provides for Atlas but isn't allowed to share.
Atlas Academy & Military
Unlike other kingdoms, the training of Huntsmen and the military overlap. Atlas Academy oversees the training of Huntsmen who are strongly encouraged to graduate into the military. As a result, the headmaster of the academy is also the general of the Atlesian military. This position means the holder of both posts gains two seats on the ruling Council of Atlas.
General James Ironwood
Voiced By: Jason Lee Rose [EN], Masaki Terasoma [JP]
Debut: Welcome to Beacon*
A General in Atlas's military and headmaster of their Huntsman academy, he has a long history with both Ozpin and Glynda. He's also connected to Penny. Ironwood fights with two simple black and white revolvers, the white one called Due Process, to devastating effect. His Semblance, Mettle, allows him to hyper-focus and strengthen his resolve to carry out his decisions.
- Affectionate Nickname: Qrow calls him Jimmy, which is there just to piss him off, but the end of the volume 3 implies their relationship is better than it seems and the nickname is genuinely meant as friendly.
- Anti-Villain: Ironwood is a well intentioned and desperate man who wants to protect Atlas against Salem, but can reach extreme means to do so. By the end of Volume 7, he's willing to abandon both Mantle to die and throw away humanity's best chance of survival by leaving Amity Tower; he also falls far enough to shoot a teenager for comparing him to Salem.
- Appeal to Force: Ironwood holds two seats on Atlas' council and commands most, if not all, of the kingdom's military might. He repeatedly uses his large fleet of soldiers to see his way through both in Vale after the breach, and in Volume 7 to maintain order. It's implied the council is too intimidated by him to voice any actual protests at first. Ironwood contemplates invoking martial law to get Mantle to deliver the necessary supplies for the Amity Tower project when Robyn inspires them to take a stand against him. When he finally succumbs to his paranoia and chooses to launch Atlas into the sky to protect it from the Grimm, Weiss asks what the Council would say to his plan; Ironwood calmly says martial law will be declared, so it wouldn't matter.
- Badass Baritone: Has one of the, if not the, deepest voices among the cast, making him fit to make great speeches and speak in a convincingly reassuring tone. This is not all talk and no show, though, as he's an accomplished Huntsman who easily mops the floor with whatever enemy he sees.
- Beard of Sorrow: His beard stubble in Volume 4 is implied to be this. He has to keep up a strong front, but the fall of Vale, the loss of Ozpin and his responsibilities since then have taken their toll. In Volume 7, he has a full beard and the level of stress he's under from trying to protect everyone against Salem is a big problem for the heroes as they try and figure out just how much information they can trust him to handle without overreacting.
- Big Good: Ironwood sees himself as the only person who can lead the fight against Salem when Professor Ozpin disappears. Atlas controls most of the global Dust mining and trade, contains the world's largest military and is the most technologically advanced kingdom in the world. He controls the Atlesian Council by holding two seats and designating certain projects, missions and decisions as 'military classification' which enables him to circumvent the authority of the council entirely. Volume 7 explores the growing concern among the Council, kingdom's citizens and heroes over his decisions and determination to concentrate power and control in the hands of himself and a few hand-picked supporters. He is determined to avoid the mistakes Ozpin made, so he shares as much information as he dares with the heroes. However, it's his determination to avoid the mistakes of the cowardly Leo that cause the biggest problems. In the face of fear, he becomes paranoid and controlling. By the end of the volume, he has descended so far into fear that his decision to institute martial law and abandon Mantle to save Atlas turns the heroes against him. When Oscar fails in his last effort to bridge the divide and observes that Ironwood is now as dangerous as Salem, Ironwood shoots him, cementing his subversion of the Big Good trope by triggering the return of the actual Big Good, Ozpin.
- Bling-Bling-BANG!: His weapon is a pair of revolvers that are decorated along the barrels and the handles with the pattern of a swirling vine.
- Boring, but Practical: When Ironwood first reveals his weapon, it takes the appearance of a large, simple handgun. He doesn't bother with bells and whistles or cool transformations. He merely wields it with deadly, casual efficiency to blow away anything that's standing in his path. This is also shown in his hand-to-hand combat: rather than over-the-top acrobatic maneuvers and takedowns, he uses straightforward punches, kicks and tackles accompanied with the occasional Pistol-Whipping.
- BrainComputer Interface: The small piece of hardware on his right temple is a neural implant, designed to assist in controlling the mechanical portion of his body. It is normally the only modification that is visible, with long sleeves and gloves covering his prosthetics from view. Thus, it serves as the first indication of Ironwood's extensive modifications.
- Brains Evil, Brawn Good: During his fight with the villainous Arthur Watts, his opponent compares his own brains to Ironwood's brawn and notes that they are evenly matched. Ironwood is clearly the superior fighter in straightforward combat, but Watts makes good use of his hacking skills to control the terrain of Amity Colosseum and keep pace with him.
- The Brigadier: Is amicable with Ozpin, and is concerned enough about his students' safety to bring some military forces to protect them. He also makes an offhand comment that he "serves" Ozpin.
- Character Shilling: An In-Universe example. RWBY: Amity Arena gives bios to every character in the game compiled by the In-Universe developers. While many try to be objective, the ones representative of the Atlas Elite tend to demonstrate a notable bias, most prevalent with the General's. His bio is very defensive of him, calling him the "hero of our time" and that he wears the burden of the world on his shoulders, talking him up as a Hero with Bad Publicity.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: While he demands complete loyalty from others, Ironwood has repeatedly betrayed the trust of others in the name of the greater good. If someone is an obstacle to accomplishing what he believes is necessary, he will use political or even military power to enforce his will.
- Ironwood has helped Ozpin fight Salem for years but they disagreed over the best way to defend Vale; Ironwood secretly convenes a meeting of the Vale and Atlesian councils to report Ozpin's behaviour, resulting in Vale removing Ozpin from overseeing the Vytal Festival security in favour of Ironwood. Qrow later tells Ironwood that he has a strange idea of showing gratitude if he responds to Ozpin bringing him into the fight against Salem by betraying him. Even after being confronted, Ironwood insists that he had no other choice.
- Ironwood spends most of Volume 7 promising that the Kingdom of Atlas is safe and that Mantle can count on him to protect them. However, when he discovers Salem is arriving in person to attack Atlas, he decides to abandon Mantle to the Grimm in favour of raising the floating city of Atlas higher in the atmosphere where the Grimm can't go. When Ruby tries warning her allies about Ironwood's plan, he disables her scroll, and has Teams RWBY, JNR, Oscar and Qrow arrested.
- Control Freak: Ironwood's a man with good intentions, but he seems to believe the best way to handle any sort of situation is if he is in full control of it. This is seen as early as Volume 2, where he both brings a large fleet (comprised mainly of machines) along with students for security and later has the Vale and Atlas Councils transfer security control of the Vytal Festival from Ozpin to himself. After the Fall of Beacon, James continues to tighten Atlas' defences with a Dust embargo and closing of its borders, and by the time the heroes arrive in Mantle, there are broadcasts of the general practically saying that as long as they cooperate with his laws, he can and will keep them safe. Among the upgrades he gives Team RWBY and their friends are brand-new Scrolls compatible with the updated cyber-security. As Salem's forces continue to sow discord and increase his paranoia, and when he discover that Team RWBY has consistently hidden important information from him, Ironwood decides to invoke martial law and raise Atlas out of Salem's reach, under his control. When Ruby warns the others of his plans, he shuts off her call with his own Scroll.
- Counting Bullets: In his duel in Volume 7, his opponent quietly keeps track of the number of bullets in his revolver. Towards the end of the battle, the duo are in a lock with a gun to Ironwood's head. James then boasts that his opponent isn't the only one who can count, and accurately predicted that he was out of ammo at the time.
- Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: The lyrics of his theme song, "Hero", raise the question of his humanity and others' perception of him as "heartless" because of his mechanical body.What if its true as they sayThat I dont have a heartThat I'm more a machine than a man?
- Cyborg: Throughout Volumes Two and Three, there have been hints that his right arm is cybernetic, including sarcastic cracks made by Qrow. It turns out that the right side of his body is either replaced or augmented with mechanical components.Qrow: That's what Ironwood can't get through that thick metal head of his.
- Determinator: Ironwood is noted for being a man who never gives up pursuing his vision of how people should be protected. When his attempts to convince Ozpin that they're on the wrong path fail, he convinces the Atlesian and Vale councils to override Ozpin's authority and give him direct control of protecting the Vytal Festival Tournament. When the villains take control of his ships at Beacon, he tries to single-handedly take back his fleet; instead his ship crashes to the ground where he fights his robot army on foot. In Volume 7, he is willing to pursue his goal of protecting the Kingdom of Atlas against Salem no matter how bad his public reputation becomes with the citizens. During his battle with Watts, the fight ends when his biological arm is trapped in a Hard Light shield by Watts. Watts points out that he could lose this arm if he tries to break free. Ironwood hesitates for a moment, then grits his teeth and pulls out his arm. The action strips the skin off his entire arm. He then captures a shocked Watts with only his cybernetic arm, vowing to do whatever it takes to stop Salem.
- Don't Call Me "Sir": Ozpin initially attempts formality, but James immediately tells him it should be dropped between friends. Glynda outright dismisses him. He acknowledges that he lets his friends call him, "James". When Oscar calls him this while trying to reason with him, Ironwood tells him that to him, and by proxy to Ozpin, he is General.
- Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: When Ironwood and Oscar argue about Salem, Oscar suggests that Ironwood is becoming as dangerous as Salem. Oscar calls him 'James' for the first time. Ironwood nods to himself and informs Oscar that only friends call him 'James'. His eyes suddenly lose all their eye shine to become dull and flat; he then tells Oscar to call him 'General', whips out his gun and shoots the boy off the ledge they're standing on. His eyes remain completely dull as he watches Oscar fall.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: Ironwood's hair is shaggier and more unkempt in Volume 4 and accompanies a rough, unshaven look to his face. His behaviour throughout Volume 4 is increasingly emotional, aggressive and authoritarian. He's extremely paranoid about both friends and foe: he becomes frustrated and angry whenever Jacques questions his decisions, he doesn't trust the Haven headmaster, and second-guessing the villains leads him to set up Dust embargoes and seal the kingdom from the rest of the world. He also begins to use his two council seats as a means to threaten Jacques to keep him in line. An angry outburst reveals the fall of Beacon and Ozpin's apparent refusal to listen to his advice has deeply affected Ironwood's emotional state, and where his mistrust turns out to be right, it's almost by accident due to his wide-sweeping paranoia.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: In Volumes 2-3, he wears a plain white glove on one of his hands, while the other hand is bare. It's to hide his robotic arm. From Volume 4, he wears white gloves on both hands, but changes to his military uniform include black aiguillettes that are worn only on the left side.
- Fatal Flaw: His paranoia. At even the slightest hint of a threat, Ironwood will immediately assume the worst-case scenario and his solution to any potential problem is overwhelming military force, as shown when he arrives at Beacon with an entire fleet. Along with this, it makes it difficult for his allies to talk him out of these things since he can't see the forest through the trees. It gets worse after the Fall of Beacon since he is now suffering from PTSD. It causes him to make decisions without consulting others and only worsens his image with the people of Mantle and Atlas, with the Dust embargo and the curfew on Mantle being two notable examples. It also makes it difficult for his allies to tell information since situations that need to be handled delicately could be mishandled due to his excessive use of force. When Cinder breaks into his office just to leave a Black Queen chess piece on his desk, he starts panicking and wondering if he has played into Salem's hands as well as second-guessing his allies once he realizes they have kept secrets from him. Salem's message leads him to declare Martial law and he stops listening to reason. Once Team RWBY expresses problems with this, he declares them, Team JNR, Qrow and Oscar wanted fugitives to keep them from interfering.
- Four-Star Badass: He's Atlas's leading huntsman as well as the commander in chief of the Atlesian army. He's also capable of soloing an alpha Beowolf with complete ease, judo-flipping the massive beast over his shoulder and pinning down its foreleg before shooting it in the back of the head, executioner-style.
- Friendly Address Privileges: At the end of Volume 7, he notes that he allows his friends to address him by just his first name, "James". When Oscar tries to address him as such, he bluntly declares that to Oscar, he's General Ironwood; this marks him as renouncing his former friendship with Ozpin.
- Frontline General: Despite his high rank in the Atlesian military, he has no compunctions about fighting on the front lines if the situation demands it.
- During the battle of Beacon, he is repeatedly attacked by an Alpha Beowolf Grimm and his own hacked robots. He destroys most of them personally, and only has to be saved by Qrow once at the end of the fight.
- During the Grimm attack on Mantle, he lures Arthur Watts into a trap at the Amity Colosseum so he can personally fight him in single combat.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: Over his right eyebrow, there is a small metal plate which is actually a neurotransmitter to help him fully control his cybernetic prostheses. It does absolutely nothing to mar his physical appearance.
- Guile Hero: Ironwood looks and acts like a straight-forward military man who prefers action to politics, but he plays the political game as well. He holds two seats on the Atlesian council. When Ozpin appears to dismiss Ironwood's suggestion that they send in the military to deal with the White Fang, Ironwood secretly reports Ozpin to the Vale Council. The Vale and Atlesian Council agree to strip Ozpin of security control for the Vytal Festival and give it to Ironwood. When Beacon falls, he organizes a Dust embargo on the rest of the world to cut off the villains' supplies of Dust, and uses the fact that he has two council seats to Jacques's one to keep the profit-hit Schnee Dust Company in line. When Ironwood receives intel that Haven is the next target after Beacon, he uses his position to seal Atlas from the outside world — nobody comes in or leaves without being Council approved. He says he will use his seat dominance on the council to threaten Jacques's business if Jacques does not fall in line. In Volume 7, Ironwood calmly shoots down Jacques' protests about commandeering a private mine with juristic justifications, even telling him he should brush up on Council law. During the battle in Mantle, he cleverly uses lies and editing of his broadcast with Robyn to trick Watts and Tyrian into walking into specially prepared traps where they can be confronted and captured.
- Guns Akimbo: Artwork for RWBY: Amity Arena reveals that Ironwood has possessed a holster for a second gun on his model since Volume 2. After seeing the holster, the artists decided to give him a second revolver that is as black as his primary revolver is white. When confronting Dr. Watts, he brings both revolvers to the fight, using the black one loaded with Gravity Dust to propel himself with the recoil, and the white one for both ranged and melee combat. During the fight however, Watts shoots the black one out of his hand, and after returning to his office, its holster is empty, implying it was lost.
- Half the Man He Used to Be: Ironwood's entire right half is mechanical, the most extreme modifications seen within the series. How this happened to him remains unrevealed, but indicates he survived something severe enough to require replacing not only his limbs, but half of his torso.
- Hand Cannon: Ironwood fights with a revolver called Due Process that possesses two triggers. Its barrel is over a foot long and is powerful enough to cause miniature explosions or pierce through a Grimm's armoured head.
- Hero Antagonist: Volume 7 slowly sees him fall into this, as his paranoia and determination to stop Salem cause him to perform increasingly questionable decisions for the greater good. While Qrow, Oscar, and Teams RWBY and JNPR support Ironwood, they increasingly debate the merit of doing so, given how concerned they're becoming with his behaviour. When Cinder breaks into his office and plants a black queen, Ironwood sends Winter to forcefully take the Winter Maiden's powers, and he begins to question every decision he's made and speculate whether he's played right into Salem's hands. His confrontation with Team RWBY over their decision to leak intel to Robyn triggers the appearance of a Seer Grimm, forcing him into a verbal confrontation with Salem. With the discovery that the conflict with Watts and Tyrian distracted them from realizing they'd lost long-range sensors and that Salem is already on her way to Atlas, Ironwood snaps. He orders the arrest of Qrow, Oscar, and Teams RWBY and JNPR, and decides to abandon Mantle to die in an effort to prevent the two Relics and the Winter Maiden from falling into Salem's hands. Volume 7 ends with him and the protagonists actively opposed to each other, as his refusal to acknowledge that his methods are flawed and his opposition towards anyone who might stand in his way solidify him as an antagonist.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: Ironwood is desperately trying to protect Atlas and Mantle from attack by Salem while trying to plan a counter-move against her. However, his method of protection involves using his military to place strict controls on the Mantle population's ability to function and to divert essential construction supplies away from Mantle's border protections. As a result, the people of Mantle regard him as no better than a dictator who is harming both their livelihoods and their city defenses. Ironwood is aware of the negative sentiment, but dismisses it as an unfortunate necessity to achieve the greater good.
- Heroic Resolve: Ironwood's Semblance was revealed during RTX 2020 to be "Mettle", an ability that involves hyper-focusing to achieve his goal no matter what stands in his way. Hints of this ability are stated to have appeared in the series.
- He Who Fights Monsters: The events of Volume 7 slowly but surely tear away at the positive aspects of his character as he succumbs to fear and paranoia, and questions whether Salem's strength comes from her ability to strip away her humanity. By the end of the volume, he has degenerated into a paranoid tyrant who abandons Mantle in favour of saving Atlas, is willing to kill a dying Winter Maiden to protect the Relics from Salem, and arrests the heroes for disagreeing with him. His decision to shoot Oscar for comparing his behavior to Salem exposes Oscar to a lament by Ozpin that actions born of fear can turn a person into the very thing they should have feared from the start.
- Hidden Depths: Sam Keiser, the set designer for Ironwood's office in Volume 7, confirmed that the design is meant to convey the idea that Ironwood is a forward-looking person. It does this by being designed in the style of an observatory to reflect Ironwood's love of astronomy.
- In Volume 2, Ironwood reveals to Glynda that he thinks Ozpin is hiding something from them. Glynda points out that he's part of the inner circle that's hiding things from the rest of the world and that he needs to stop talking about trust and learn how to trust others. Ignoring her advice, he secretly collaborates with the Vale Council to strip Ozpin of his control over the Vytal Festival security, then tells Ozpin to trust him. This comes to a head in Volume 7 when Yang and Blake secretly collaborate with Robyn; unlike Ozpin, who takes the betrayal very quietly and continues working with Ironwood without complaint, Ironwood turns on Team RWBY for their betrayal, says "Loyalty always matters!", and orders their arrest. His expectation that everyone trust him while giving no trust in return therefore helps destroy the fledgling anti-Salem alliance.
- In Volume 7, the heroes discuss the possibility of implementing martial law. Ironwood asserts that sacrifices are necessary for the greater good and that every one of them has made sacrifices. Nora bluntly tells him that he's not sacrificing anything while forcing Mantle to sacrifice everything.
- Image Song: Volume 7's "Hero" is from James' point of view and covers his willingness to sacrifice whatever he must to protect the people of Atlas, as well as his belief that emotions get in the way of this. The song plays during his fight with Watts, which ends with them discussing it. Ironwood rips the skin off his entire arm to escape a Hard Light trap and capture Watts, warning him that he will sacrifice anything to stop Salem. Watts simply tells him that he hopes Ironwood does; when Salem talks to Ironwood shortly afterwards, it becomes clear that Watts' mission wasn't to 'win', it was to destabilise Ironwood into succumbing to this very mentality, which isolates him from his friends and turns his allies against him.
- Innocently Insensitive: In "Worst Case Scenario", Oscar tells Ironwood that it feels very strange to know a part of him was responsible for the creation of the Vault of the Winter Maiden. Ironwood attempts to reassure him by saying that he'll get used to it and that, eventually, he won't even know who's who anymore. Oscar is standing behind him, so he doesn't see how Oscar deflates at that comment; Volume 6 revealed that Oscar's biggest fear was that he's nothing more than just another of Ozma's lives.
- Jacob Marley Warning: Discussed and Subverted. Ironwood desperately wants Ozpin's advice on his plan to fight back against Salem, as well as his plan to protect Atlas. However, Ozpin's unavailability means his only advisor is Ozpin's new host, Oscar. Oscar tries to teach Ironwood not to make Ozpin's mistake of isolating himself into a corner where he becomes the only person who makes the decisions and shares none of the burden with allies. Although it initially looks like Oscar's advice has sunk in when he unites with the council and Robyn to evacuate Mantle, the discovery a short time later that Salem is almost on their doorstep with an army is the last straw for Ironwood; he completes the transformation into a dangerous authoritarian who won't listen to reason when he decides to silence Oscar once and for all.
- Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Since the fall of Beacon Academy, Ironwood has become increasingly unstable and paranoid, making more and more ethically questionable decisions that he repeatedly justifies as the greater good; by his own admission, he will do anything it takes to stop Salem. When Cinder plants a black queen piece in his office, along with the discovery that Salem is personally leading an attack on Atlas, Ironwood finally snaps, deciding to abandon Mantle to Salem's mercy to keep Atlas, the Winter Maiden, and the Relics out of her reach before ordering Team RWBY's arrest when they refuse to follow his regime. What fully cements how far he has fallen is shooting Oscar, a fourteen-year old boy who is only trying to talk him down, off a ledge.]
- Kick the Morality Pet: In Volume 7, Ironwood spends considerable time with Oscar and serves as a mentor to the teenager. Their interactions have a positive impact on Ironwood, showing a warmer side to the stern General and visibly improving his condition. When things reach a breaking point at the end of the volume, Oscar seeks out Ironwood to reason with him. Ironwood instead shoots him off the Vault's ledge with full intention of killing the young man.
- Knight Templar: As Volume 7 progresses, he becomes willing to commit increasingly dubious actions in order to oppose Salem. He starts off by imposing a military embargo on Mantle despite the economic hardships said embargo is causing for the civilians on the ground and diverting resources that Mantle needs to rebuild its infrastructure to build a comm tower at Amity Colosseum. By the end of the volume, he's degenerated into declaring full martial law, abandoning Mantle to die, and either attacking or having arrested anyone who opposes him.
- Leitmotif: A bombastic militaristic theme plays whenever he and the Atlesian Army appear. An extended version, "Hero", plays during his confrontation with Dr. Watts.
- Light Is Good: Since his first appearance, Ironwood dresses in pristine white garb befitting his status as a headmaster and general dedicated to protecting the citizens of Remnant. Regretfully, it becomes Light Is Not Good as Volume 7 sees him crossing more lines to combat Salem's forces.
- Line in the Sand: When the students ask him what they should do in response to the invasion of Vale, Ironwood states that they can either stay and defend Vale and Beacon or they can go ahead and run to save themselves. They decide to stay and fight.
- Locked Out of the Loop:
- In "Mountain Glenn", he admits to Glynda that he thinks Ozpin is hiding information from him. When Glynda points out he's in the loop that's hiding information from everyone else, Ironwood mentions that makes his fear worse. He eventually learns what Ozpin has been hiding in Volume 7.
- In Volume 7, James specifically tries to avert this after seeing it as one of Ozpin's greatest failings; from the moment he meets up with Team RWBY he tells them in detail about his plans for the Amity Tower, alongside having already brought Winter, Penny and the Ace-Ops into the fold. Team RWBY still decides to hold off from telling him the truth about the Relic of Knowledge, Ozpin and Salem; after seeing the level of military activity in Mantle, they're not sure what Ironwood would do with the information if he had it and want to wait and see if he proves himself trustworthy. This doesn't end well when he learns that Salem's impending attack from her armies was stronger than he anticipated, and that Ruby, Blake and Yang had lied to him for the bulk of the volume about Salem's strength and telling Robyn about Amity respectively.
- Moral Myopia: Ironwood's numerous conflicts throughout the series occur because he feels he does not need to follow the standards he sets for others; He demands people trust him while showing them none in return. He forces others to sacrifice much for the cause while giving up very little in return. He insists on loyalty when he has turned on others solely because they disagreed with him.
- Necessarily Evil: His character deconstructs the mindset of this character archetype. He declares his willingness to sacrifice his reputation and humanity for the greater good by forcing others to sacrifice for his cause. Characters constantly question the morality of his choices and his own actions create consequences that later bite him in the ass. His lack of concern over his image and the negativity his actions generate serve only to assist Salem's plans and increasingly alienate him from the heroes. He appoints himself the judge of what counts as the "greater good", he neglects Mantle's security and makes it increasingly vulnerable to attack by viewing it as less important than Atlas. Oscar lampshades the deconstruction by pointing out that being willing to sacrifice all of Remnant just so "a few can live" is making him just as dangerous a threat as Salem.
- The Needs of the Many: A recurring theme and character flaw of Ironwood's is that he is willing to make any sacrifice for the sake of protecting the people of Remnant, even his own personal safety. This is deconstructed however come Volume 7, by demonstrating Ironwood doesn't know when he's gone too far. He doesn't consider the negative consequences his actions have on Mantle and how it hurts his image — something that both Jaune and Nora point out. Rather, he only considers the fact that it will eventually aid in the fight against Salem while allowing tensions in Mantle to grow. When he realizes Cinder is in the city and Salem is on her way in person, he concludes that the decision is between continuing Mantle's evacuation and allowing Salem to slaughter almost everyone or leaving Mantle behind by getting Atlas high enough to avoid Grimm. He chooses the latter and this causes the schism within the group of those who agree with his assessment and those who don't. Oscar also rightly points out that saving just Atlas will only save a handful of people comparitively while leaving everyone on the ground to die.
- The Paranoiac: Ironwood's biggest character flaw is his extreme tendency to see enemies everywhere around him and his subsequent inability to trust anyone. Signs of his paranoia are sprinkled throughout the first six Volumes, such as his assuming control of the Vytal Festival security out of mistrust of Ozpin, his enforcement of a Dust embargo to keep Dust out of Salem's hands, his closing of Atlas' borders so Salem's people can't enter the kingdom, and Leo and Pietro's assessments that the Fall of Beacon is negatively affecting his judgement. However, it's not until the heroes are dealing directly with Ironwood that they begin to see for themselves how disturbing Ironwood's paranoia has become and that the Atlesian Council is very concerned by his behaviour. The heroes struggle to decide if they can trust him, causing them to keep secrets from him and work with Robyn behind his back. When Cinder leaves a black queen on Ironwood's desk and Salem reveals she's already approaching Atlas with her own army, the last of his self-restraint snaps. To protect the Relics and Winter Maiden, he determines that only Atlas can be saved. He orders Winter to forcibly take the Winter Maiden's power, demands the arrest of Team RWBY's entire group, decides to implement martial law to de-power the Council, and chooses to abandon Mantle to die.Jacques: You've never trusted anyone other than yourself!
James: And for good reason! [slams his fist on Jacques' desk, cracking it]
- Perma-Stubble: Ironwood was originally a clean-shaven man. However, since the fall of Beacon, he has been sporting an unshaven look, with the stubble reaching all the way up to his cheek bones. He's been run ragged. By the time of Volume 7, it's grown into a full Beard of Sorrow.
- Pistol-Whipping: His weapon appears to have no alternate form, and is just a Hand Cannon... that he can hold by the barrel to bludgeon any unfortunate Grimm that crosses his path rather than shooting at them. When he does so the one time, a Sickening "Crunch!" is heard.
- Power of Trust: His competence increases drastically when he manages to work through his paranoia and put his faith in others. The biggest Hope Spot of Volume 7 comes when he is convinced to fully explain his own actions to Robyn and the council, leading to Mantle being evacuated in a relatively orderly fashion and Watts and Tyrian both being defeated and arrested. However, when Cinder smashes his Trauma Button by planting a black queen chess piece in his office, he begins second-guessing everyone around him again, and it only takes two episodes for him to undo nearly everything he accomplished in that timespan.
- Reasonable Authority Figure:
- When Yang attacks Mercury during the Vytal Festival due to Emerald's illusions, Ironwood disqualifies Team RWBY for the perceived assault, but he believes Yang when she says she saw Mercury attack her, even if he doesn't believe it happened. He also doesn't charge her, despite how everyone feels about what they saw. This contrasts with his anger over Qrow fighting Winter in public and arguing about secret matters in front of students. He knows Qrow should know better and is making things worse, but he believes Yang is a stressed soldier who needs the correct support.
- While attending a charity fundraiser arranged by the Schnee Dust Company, he witnesses Weiss blow up against a woman who mocked Vale's plight, which ends with Weiss inadvertently summoning a Boarbatusk that nearly kills said woman before Ironwood puts it down; when the woman demands that Ironwood arrest Weiss for this incident, he refuses and publicly agrees with Weiss's "The Reason You Suck" Speech against the guests.
- In Volume 7, Ironwood constantly struggles to stay a reasonable authority figure as Atlas is threatened, enough that his leadership of Atlas is constantly questioned, even by the heroes who mostly support him because they can see he's trying to protect everyone from Salem and his bad reputation in Mantle mostly comes down to his self-admitted lack of cares about public relations. Eventually, the heroes all come together to protect and evacuate Mantle, which convinces the heroes to tell him the truth about Salem because they can see he genuinely is trying to do the right thing. The trope is then subverted as their confession that they've been hiding the truth about Salem and lying about the Relic of Knowledge's powers combine with Cinder's last minute attack on his mental state and Salem's revelation that she's almost at his doorstep with an army; he succumbs to his paranoia and becomes increasingly threatening and hostile until he ends the volume as an antagonist the heroes must oppose.
- Recoil Boost: Ironwood's secondary pistol is loaded with gravity dust bullets. Rather than fire at his target, Ironwood shoots it behind himself to propel himself at any angle a great distance.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Qrow has red eyes and dark-red Aura, and possesses an explosive personality. He's a scruffy dresser, is always drunk, and has a jaded, cynical view of the world; he can be prone to childish or whimsical acts when people irritate him. James has blue eyes and blue Aura, and possesses a composed personality. He dresses smartly in Atlesian army uniform and, while he also carries a hip flask, he only drinks sparingly. He has an idealistic view of the world, believing he only has to show people a strong display of protection to make them feel safe in the world. He and Qrow clash a lot over the best way to help Ozpin precisely because Qrow thinks too much about consequences and James doesn't think about them enough.
- Reverse Arm-Fold: Befitting his status as a high-ranking military officer, Ironwood's default stance is to stand broad-shouldered with his hands clasped behind his back.
- Revolvers Are Just Better: Ironwood's weapon is a pale revolver that has no other special qualities aside from being very large and powerful with patterns on the barrel. When he needs the extra firepower, he brings out a second revolver that is a much darker version of his primary one, but just shoots different ammunition.
- Sanity Has Advantages: Ironwood may be out to save the world and has the resources to do it, but his paranoia and pathological need to be in total control ensures that it will never happen. The trauma from the events of Volume 3 have worsened his flaws to the point where he closes his kingdom's borders, withdraws all foreign aid, and essentially gives Salem's agents free reign to do as they please. In Volume 6, Tyrian outright states how bad it will be for their cause if Ironwood were to come to his senses. In Volume 7, upon seeing how much of a police state the city of Mantle has become, the heroes hold off on telling Ironwood the Awful Truth about Salem because they worry about his overreactions. In Volume 7, just when Ironwood is starting to work with others, Cinder plants a queen chess piece made of black glass in his office, the symbol she used during the Fall of Beacon. His Trauma Button thoroughly smashed, Ironwood devolves into a vicious dictator, lashing out at any who disagree with him, and in two episodes manages to undo everything he tried to accomplish.
- Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: He holds two positions on the Atlas Council, and takes full advantage of it to see his way through the events of Vale after the breach, as well as in Mantle to maintain order and advance his plans of stopping Salem. In Volume 4, he threatens to use his seats to cause trouble for Jacques and his company if he steps out of line. He completely falls into this territory at the end of Volume 7 when he elects to abandon Mantle to Salem and raise Atlas into the sky, declaring martial law in the process so the rest of the Council can't object to it.Ironwood: . No one in; no one out. Without the council's permission.
Jacques: You mean, without your permission?
Ironwood: And if that becomes the case, I would think you'd want to be on my good side.
- Shadow Archetype: Discussed between Ironwood and Oscar. Ironwood spends Volume 7 utterly haunted by how Leo's fear of Salem destroyed him and endangered Mistral and Haven. He is so determined not to end up like Leo, that he doesn't realise what mistakes his own fear of Salem is causing. While Leo completely submitted to Salem and became her puppet, he has full self-awareness and knows exactly how far he's fallen and why. Ironwood cannot accept that he has any fear of Salem at all and interprets the problem as possessing "humanity". He believes Salem is a threat because she has none and speculates that the solution is to become the same. He becomes increasingly controlling over his kingdom and his allies; regardless of how much suffering his methods cause, he persists in believing it's for "the greater good". While Leo is willing to give up the Relic of Knowledge and his kingdom's Huntsmen, Ironwood is so determined to prevent Salem getting the Relics, his Huntsmen and the Winter Maiden, and thereby avoid Leo's mistakes, that he travels in the opposite direction, becoming a dangerous authoritarian instead of a spineless coward.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran:
- In the episode "Destiny", he talks to Team RWBY about the effects of adrenaline on the battlefield, and how it can make even experienced warriors see things that aren't there. Although he's trying to understand why Yang's version of her fight against Mercury doesn't match what the world saw, he touches his cybernetic arm and mentions "even after the threat has passed". There's a strong hint that Ironwood may be talking more about himself and his past than Yang's current situation, further implying that he suffers from PTSD.
- In Volume 4, his arguments with Jacques and his scruffy stubble suggest he's haunted by the Battle of Beacon and it's driving his more extreme decisions, such as placing a global embargo on Dust shipping and locking down Atlas to traffic. In Volume 5, Leo mentions that he doesn't know what happened to Ironwood during the Battle of Beacon, but it seems to have brought out his worst personality traits, such as paranoia. In Volume 7, his paranoia has led him to refit the entire Atlas security network to ensure a security breach such as the one that happened in Vale can't happen again; when talking to Oscar about Beacon, he mentions how helpless he felt while experiencing a flashback to the Black Queen sigil that Cinder's uploaded virus created when Cinder took control of the Vytal Festival broadcast and Atlesian fleet stationed at Beacon.Ironwood: When Salem hit Beacon, even with all my ships, all my men, I was no match for her. I've never felt so helpless. [in his mind, the control panel in front of him changes to show a black queen chess piece] The way she told me she was there...
- Shirtless Scene: In Volume 3's eleventh episode, he leaves the wreckage of a ship with most of his shirt and some of his pants torn/burned away. It reveals that the right half of his body is biomechanical, and there is burn scarring where it's attached to his body.
- Shut Up, Kirk!: With the situation for Atlas at its bleakest, Ironwood decides to take the most extreme measure that he feels he has to to save Atlas. He's done listening to anyone try and talk him out of this plan. When Oscar confronts Ironwood in the Vault of the Winter Maiden, he tries to convince the general that taking Atlas into orbit and abandoning Mantle will only doom it and the rest of Remnant to Salem's unchecked rampage. General Ironwood cuts off Oscar by sarcastically calling his concerns "excellent philisophical points" that won't matter in the end if Salem gets the Relics from Atlas, which he's trying to prevent by taking Atlas and two of the Relics where she can't reach them.
- Skunk Stripe: His black hair has a few white streaks on the sides of his head.
- Super Strength: Ironwood can use his gloved right arm to stop an Alpha Beowolf's punch, and swing the thing over his head like it's nothing, which is impressive given it is roughly three times his size and weight. It's more justified than usual for the series, in this case, as said arm was also the cybernetic one.
- Then Let Me Be Evil: Ironwood has made it clear that he will use whatever means necessary to defeat Salem. When Team RWBY calls out his decision to raise Atlas out of Salem's reach, he calmly says he's aware that he is essentially damning Mantle to her wrath. He later tells Oscar that he is done letting others' opinions hold him back from doing what he thinks is right. The boy warns him that he'd become as dangerous as Salem herself like that; the general simply nods to himself but doesn't deny it.
- Tragic Hero: He genuinely means well in opposing Salem and her forces, but his severe paranoia complex, exacerbated by the stress of being one of the only ones in the know about Salem and having to explain his actions to the skeptical populace and council, cause his decisions to degenerate over time. By the end of Volume 7, he becomes willing to abandon everyone in Mantle to die, violently lashes out at anyone who opposes him, and manages to undo all of the hard work he's accomplished by second-guessing his own actions.
- Tranquil Fury: James is someone who works very hard to keep his emotions in check, especially when he's enraged. When Ironwood and Jacques confront each other during the council meeting, Ironwood becomes increasingly angry with Jacques, but remains calm and controlled throughout the exchange. When it's revealed that Jacques gave his login credentials for the Atlesian security network to Watts in exchange for rigging the election, he rips into Jacques for his actions, but remains controlled despite his aggressive posture of looming over Jacques. After the battle, when he decides to move Atlas out of Salem's reach and orders Team RWBY's arrest, he is far too calm. Despite raising his voice during their argument, Ironwood's tone and facial expressions are ice-cold when he draws his gun and shoots Oscar.
- Trauma Button: Ironwood implies in Volume 3 that he suffers from PTSD, and if he didn't before then Volume 7 makes it very clear that the Fall of Beacon has severely impacted his psyche. In particular, the black queen chess piece, which is Salem's Calling Card, is able to trigger his post-traumatic stress. When Ironwood recounts how helpless he felt when Salem's agents took control of his automated army during the Fall of Beacon, he flashes back to seeing the Black Queen sigil on his computers. In "Gravity", Cinder plants a home-made Black Queen in his office. When Ironwood sees it, he begins making a series of extreme and panicked decisions: he sends Winter to take the Winter Maiden's power by force, wildly begins second-guessing all of his decisions in case they've played into Salem's hands, turn on Team RWBY for keeping secrets and leaking intel to Robyn, and making the decision to doom Mantle in order to save Atlas, the Relics the Winter Maiden and the rest of Remnant. When Cinder watches the result of her handiwork unfold, she smugly comments "Still afraid, I see".
- To Unmasque the World: Come Volume 7, with Ozpin no longer around to guide them, Ironwood feels a new plan is needed: rather than continue a Secret War, he's going to out Salem's existence to all of Remnant and unite the world against her. Although the heroes were very angry with Ozpin's secrecy, their response to Ironwood's plan is to display similar misgivings to Ozpin himself over the potential chaos and panic revealing the truth to the world might cause. As of "Gravity", he abandons this plan in favor of keeping the city of Atlas, the Winter Maiden, and the Relics of Knowledge and Creation out of Salem's reach, sacrificing Mantle in the process.
- Unwitting Pawn: Discussed. In Volume 7, Ironwood tries to pre-empt Salem's plots and activities by upgrading Atlesian security, recalling his military back home and placing Mantle under heavy surveillance while he prepares a counter-plan that involves repurposing Amity Colosseum. This causes arguments among the heroes over whether the squeeze on Mantle's economy might play into Salem's hands by exacerbating divisions between Mantle and Atlas. When the heroes finally unite to save to capture Watts and Tyrian, and evacuate Mantle, they appear to finally get on top of the situation. Then Ironwood discovers Salem's black queen chess piece sitting on his office desk, revealing Cinder's presence in Atlas and triggering his PTSD over Salem's use of that symbol during the Battle of Beacon. Interpreting it as a sign that Salem's been one step ahead of him the entire time, he begins questioning whether every action they've taken has successfully played right into Salem's hands. This reignites the arguments between all the heroes over what the best course of action to take now is. When it becomes clear that Salem is on her way in person and the kingdom's long-distance sensors are offline, the arguments become irreconcilable.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: In Volume 7, Ironwood engages in increasingly authoritarian measures to deal with the threat Salem poses to the Kingdom of Atlas. He institutes a military curfew on Mantle, justifying the oppression to keep Salem's agents out of the kingdom. He intends on blowing the secret of Salem wide-open, despite knowing this will trigger massive Grimm assaults that will cause panic, devastation and chaos, arguing that the Atlesian military can handle the fall-out. He arranges to have Winter inherit the Winter Maiden powers by ensuring she is the dying Maiden's only care-giver. When he learns that Cinder is active in Atlas, he orders Winter to forcefully take the Winter Maiden powers, intends to declare martial law to sideline the Atlesian Council and decides to raise Atlas high into the heavens, abandoning Mantle to its fate. When he confirms Team RWBY has been keeping secrets from him and leaked intel to Robyn, he takes responsibility for the Relic of Knowledge away from them. His argument is that it's impossible to save both cities from Salem and the Grimm so he needs to cut his losses and just save Atlas. He then orders the arrest of anyone who isn't on board with his plan.
- We Used to Be Friends: James' personality and mannerisms clash throughout Volumes 2 and 3 with those of Ozpin, Glynda and Qrow, but he considers them trusted friends. In the Volume 7 episode "A New Approach", he seems genuinely relieved at the prospect of Ozpin being back and hugs Qrow in a private moment, emphasizing that he's really happy to see him. By the end of the volume, Ironwood has been willing to sacrifice everything, including his friendships in the pursuit of protecting Atlas. In the finale "The Enemy of Trust", the consequences of Ironwood ordering Qrow's arrest leads Qrow to swear to make him pay for what he's done. Ironwood then clashes with Oscar over the consequences of his intended plan and coldly and violently rescinds his friendship with Oscar and, by extension, Ozpin.
- When All You Have Is a Hammer...: His default reaction to any problem is to throw overwhelming military force at it. His presence in Vale triggers arguments with Qrow and Glynda because of this habit and, when he explains that he wants the citizens of Vale to feel safe knowing his army will protect them, Ozpin points out that it'll instead make people wonder what the scale of the threat is. In Volume 7, the heroes are concerned about the level of military presence in Mantle, Blake observes that he's prone to overreacting and Nora argues with him constantly about the harmful impact of his military decisions on Mantle.
- Would Hurt a Child: Ironwood is willing to do whatever it takes to protect the kingdom from Salem, even if that means willingly putting a child's life in danger. When Oscar confronts Ironwood about his plan to abandon Mantle, Oscar eventually tells Ironwood that he has become as dangerous as Salem. Ironwood responds by shooting Oscar, breaking his Aura and sending him plummeting down a shaft thousands of feet deep.
Voiced By: Taylor McNee (née Pelto) [EN], Megumi Han [JP]
Debut: The Stray*
A very odd girl that Weiss ran into near the docks, Penny is a participant in the Vytal Festival tournament. She very quickly becomes attached to Ruby, who unwittingly called her "friend". She is later revealed to be a robot designed with help from General Ironwood, unique in that she can generate an Aura. Penny fights with a collection of swords tied to her by micro-thin strings called Floating Array. She can use the swords to generate a powerful laser blast.
- A.I.-cronym: Implied. A shot of her schematics in Volume 3 reveals that her name is an acronym, though what it stands for isn't revealed.
- Androids Are People, Too: Penny, for all her weirdness, is portrayed as a conscious person rather than a machine. She is fully capable of having her own desires and making choices based on them. When Ruby finds out about Penny's nature, she assures her that she is just as real as anybody else. After Pyrrha accidentally destroys Penny, she is overtaken by shock followed by shame and the scene is portrayed as horrific despite Penny being a robot. Both Ironwood and Lionheart refer to Penny as a "girl" afterwards, indicating that they at least recognize her as an actual person. The only characters to ever describe Penny as less than a full-fledged person are Penny herself and Cinder, who is hardly the most empathetic of people. The climax of Volume 7 reveals that she is a real enough girl to be an eligible recipient of the Winter Maiden's powers.
- Artificial Family Member: Penny sees Pietro, her creator, as her father and addresses him as such, and he in turn views her as his daughter.
- Artificial Intelligence: According to RWBY: Amity Arena, Penny is less an actual robot and actually Atlas' first foray into sentient AI, it's just her cores that house her AI and Aura are placed inside a robotic chassis.
- Attack Drone: Her weapons consist of an array of wire-operated blades that appear to levitate. Remotely controlling them, she can use them to individually slash at enemies, grapple objects, fire laser beams, combine to form her Wave-Motion Gun, or even use their beams as propulsion.
- Back from the Dead: Penny is introduced in the first episode of Volume 7 as a rebuilt robot. Her creator, Pietro, makes it clear that, as long as her core survives the damage, she can be restored. Despite the level of tearing Penny experienced in the fight with Pyrrha, her core survived and was able to be recovered once the military had brought Amity Colosseum to Atlas. She has not been rebuilt to her original specifications, having received upgrades during her rebuild. RWBY: Amity Arena clarifies she has several cores in her body.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: In "The Stray", the start of her and Ruby's friendship was when Ruby addressed her as "friend", which Penny really took to heart.
- Become a Real Boy: When Penny first revealed she was a robot to Ruby, she described herself as not being 'real', something Ruby dismissed because she could feel Penny's soul. However, Penny only has a partial Aura, pieces of Pietro's Aura that he has given to her so that she can function as intended. When Fria gives Penny the Maiden power, she links hands with Penny and her Aura is briefly shown to travel from her arm to encase Penny's. Maiden powers are linked to Aura and the soul; it's implied that receiving the Maiden power means that Penny now has a full Aura of her own, which is a very important element of defining life on Remnant and means that this is the moment Penny 'becomes a real girl'.Penny: I'm not real.
Ruby: Of course you are. You think just because you've got nuts and bolts instead of squishy guts makes you any less real than me?
Penny: I don't... Um... You're taking this extraordinarily well.
Ruby: You're not like those things we saw back there. You've got a heart, and a soul; I can feel it.
- Catch Phrase: She tends to greet people with "Sal-u-tations!"
- Comically Missing the Point: Since she doesn't realize how big of a revelation it was for Ruby, Weiss and Yang to learn that Blake's a Faunus, she has a different take on Ruby's comment:Ruby: You see, Blake might not be who we thought she was.
Penny: *gasps* Is she a man?
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Her first appearances paint a picture of a mild mannered girl, who appears slightly touched in the head. Although she says that she's "combat ready", she turns out to be far more capable a fighter than Ruby has ever seen. When Torchwick lands a cheap blow on Ruby, she not only wipes the floor with the White Fang, she single-handedly downs three armed airships.
- Cute Bruiser: Played with - she's cute, surely, but her fighting style isn't power-based, possibly. However, she does pull back a Bullhead with her string blades and using only her body as anchor.
- Dance Battler: Penny controls her swords' motion through body movement. It's best seen in her fight against Pyrrha, in which her movements form a rather expressive dance.
- Dissonant Serenity: She makes short work of the White Fang and three airships with a smile on her face the whole time. And in her introductory scene, she's fine with starting a conversation with Team RWBY while still on the ground.
- Does Not Know Her Own Strength: Penny tends to be a teensy bit too enthusiastic with showing affection. After Ruby easily accepts her being a robot, she happily pulls in the girl for a crushing embrace. When she glomps Ruby at the tournament, she accidentally slams her to the ground and bear-hugs the air out of her. Happens again in Volume 7's premiere, only this time, she's also got rocket boots, sending them skidding a decent distance. Even something as simple as a knuckle-bump causes pain for poor Ruby. She might not know her own weight given that she's made of metal.
- First Friend: When Team RWBY first meets Penny, Ruby's casual 'Farewell, friend' as she leaves causes Penny to immediately latch on to her because no-one has ever called her 'friend' before. Ruby and Penny end up becoming true friends, which allows Penny to confide in Ruby a secret she knows General Ironwood doesn't want people to know about and which her own team-mates, whom she describes as having been forced to spend time with her, also don't know.
- Frickin' Laser Beams: Unlike most weapons, Floating Array produces energy blasts as projectiles instead of bullets, explosives, or Dust. Every blade is capable of firing independantly, though they can also combine their shots for stronger attacks, going all the way up to Wave-Motion Gun levels if they're all used in tandem.
- Friendless Background: "Never Miss a Beat" implies that she doesn't have friends among the Atlas students and that Ruby is the first one she has ever made. She confirms this in Volume 7, while also noting that Ironwood has her so focused on defending Mantle that she doesn't have any opportunity to make new friends.
- Fun with Acronyms: In Volume 3 Episode 5, we can see a blueprint for Penny, revealing her name is spelled out as P.E.N.N.Y. No word on what each letter means.
- Half the Man He Used to Be: The wire strings that she uses to control her blades can also be used to garotte people and sever limbs or cut a body in half. When Emerald tricks Pyrrha into using her full Semblance to repel Penny's blades, the wires accidentally entangle Penny's body and pull tight, severing her left arm and torso.
- Heart Drive: Penny is a robot whose identity is contained within several cores somewhere in her body. As long as these cores survives, she can be rebuilt. The cores includes a piece of Pietro's Aura, which was needed to create her in the first place. Each time she is rebuilt, Pietro has to use a new piece of his Aura. The Aura is what makes Penny who she is, but it's also what makes it so hard to create any more robots like her.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: Penny receives bad publicity due to a perception of her being just a robot weapon of Ironwood's. When Tyrian massacres several of Robyn's supporters and Watts manipulates the security footage to make it look like Penny did it, people at the rally call out that it's 'Ironwood's robot' and there's a public outcry demanding her deactivation even after it's proven that the security footage was doctored.
- Idiot Hair: Penny has a single curl of hair sticking upwards from the top of her head. She is an awkward person with a strange way of talking and poor social skills. She latches onto Ruby when Ruby says 'see you around, friend', nobody having ever called her 'friend' before. The reason for her odd speech and poor social skills is because she's a very high-quality and classified combat robot.
- It's Personal: When Cinder and Penny confront each other, Penny observes that Cinder was responsible for what happened to Beacon and the fact that she was torn apart in Amity's arena. Cinder responds that what happened to Penny was unfortunately temporary and indicates her willingness to this time destroy Penny and leave nothing left to be salvaged. When she asks what Penny thinks about that, Penny activates her swords and states that it gives her 'personal feelings'.
- Kill the Cutie: During her tournament battle, Penny's blades are repelled by her opponent's Semblance. The wires she uses to control the blades accidentally tangle around her body and pull tight, ripping her apart in front of a global audience. In an attempt to incite mistrust between Kingdoms, Cinder gives a speech lampshading the moment by implying that Atlas has created a combat android that appears to be a cute little girl as a means to infiltrate other Kingdoms instead of fight the Grimm. Volume 7 reveals this to be a subverted trope because she is a robot that can be rebuilt. However, her existence is complicated by the fact her design rests on being a synthetic lifeform that can use Aura; she can only be rebuilt as many times as her creator has Aura to spare, meaning she cannot "come back from the dead" on an infinite basis.
- Kryptonite Factor: Most humans aren't consciously aware of magnetism and Pyrrha can only directly affect people with her magnetism power if they're wearing metal she can manipulate instead. Penny, however, is a robot that is made of a magnetic material. During the Vytal Festival tournament, the villains deliberately rig the fights so that Penny will be forced to fight Pyrrha to deliberately invoke this weakness. When they trick Pyrrha into using her full power, Penny and her sword wires become so badly entangled by the force of the magnetic pulse that she ends up being torn to shreds by her own weapons.
- Lampshade Hanging: In "Black and White", when Weiss and Yang abandon Ruby and leave her alone with Penny, a tumbleweed blows past to illustrate how awkward the situation is. Penny remarks, "It sure is windy today!"
- Lightning Bruiser: While most of the time she simply manipulates her blades, when she does get moving she both moves fast and hits hard. She has the physical strength to stop vehicles with her bare hands and pull planes out of the sky and she can boost her speed in an almost rocket-boost style fashion when she needs to. She is the first character to genuinely put Pyrrha on the defensive in battle.
- Literal-Minded: Thanks to her naivety, Penny can take statements at face value or misinterpret them. When faced with a potential ambush, Clover orders Penny to "keep an eye on [their] six." "Six" meaning their rear in this situation. Penny confirms the order and states that she would plan for six possibilities.
- Magitek: Penny is the first robot that is capable of generating an Aura and Ruby comments that she can feel Penny's soul. In Volume 7, the dying Fria is able to successfully transfer her Maiden powers to Penny, resulting in Penny becoming the new Winter Maiden and therefore a robot capable of wielding elemental magic.
- Marionette Master: She fights with swords attached to wires that come out of her back. She manipulates the swords as marionette's would be controlled.
- Marionette Motion: When controlling her swords through the use of wires, she starts moving as though she's the one being controlled by marionette strings.
- Meaningful Name: "Polendina" is a yellow mushy food that was the insult used to describe Geppetto's hair in The Adventures of Pinocchio. She refers to the man who created her as "father" and she is based off Pinocchio, who was the artificial "son" of his creator, Geppetto. Her fate is to be garroted by her own strings, which is something that also happened to Pinocchio.
- Mysterious Employer: A strange man who collects her in a car after the fight tells her that "her time will come". Implied to be her "father" as her employer is Ironwood, a different man entirely.
- Never Bareheaded: Penny always wears a bow in her hair, in a half-ponytail style. The bow is always worn at a crooked angle.
- No Sense of Personal Space: She tends to stand extremely close to people, due to her being a robot that doesn't know how to socialize properly.
- No Social Skills: She seems genuinely confused that Ruby can be mad at Blake, who is her friend. Her interactions with Team RWBY are also highly awkward, though she gets better about this in subsequent volumes.
- One-Man Army: She is a socially awkward girl who is struggling to learn about friendship. However, in Volume 1, Penny packs enough firepower to defeat a small army of mooks and 3 of their jets by herself, leaving Ruby astounded and forcing Roman to flee. During the tournament in Volume 3, she and her team-mate make it to the doubles-round. However, Ciel stands back and just watches as Penny easily defeats Russel and Dove all by herself. In Volume 7, she defeats an invasion of Grimm all by herself and introduces herself to the protagonists as the official protector of the city of Mantle.
- OOC Is Serious Business: When Ruby first encounters Penny in Volume 2, she tries to find out where Penny's been since she mysteriously disappeared during the Volume 1 finale "Black and White", but Penny acts like she has no idea who Ruby is. It turns out that Penny is being monitored by the Atlesian military because she's a very special person who cannot be allowed to roam freely without some kind of escort or guardian. She's terrified of getting Ruby into trouble if they're caught together.
- Pedestrian Crushes Car: She singlehandedly stops a truck from hitting Ruby in episode 3 of volume 2. This prompts eyewitnesses and Ruby to question who (or what) Penny really is.
- Pinocchio Nose: She begins to hiccup loudly when she lies.
- Powered by a Forsaken Child: Penny is the first artificial being that is capable of generating Aura. The origin of her Aura is controversial. Pietro has to remove pieces of his own Aura to create her and every time he rebuilds her, leaving him with burn-like holes in his Aura and deteriorating health.
- Recoil Boost: She can use the beams from her knives as a sort of jetpack to launch herself forward.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Penny is the Red Oni and Winter is the Blue Oni. Winter and Penny act as Ironwood's closest aides in the fight against Salem. Winter is a cold and calculating human who seeks to bury her emotions underneath dutiful, rational behaviour. Penny is a warm and outgoing robot, who speaks from the heart and questions orders that she fears are morally questionable. The pair disagree constantly over their beliefs with Penny favouring humanity over Winter's professionalism, ultimately causing the dying Winter Maiden's power to pass to Penny instead of the intended successor, Winter.
- Retractable Weapon: About a dozen blades collapse into an object the size of a regular sword, which pops out of a compartment in her back.
- Ridiculously Human Robot: She identifies herself as fully synthetic, but can generate an Aura and thus has a soul, though this may not have been gained in the typical manner. During Volume 2, she overcomes her robot-like weirdness and starts to behave more human; her guards also treat her like a human girl instead of a robot. Penny indicates that her true nature is restricted information as Ironwood doesn't want anyone to know the truth. Cinder finds out after hacking into Ironwood's scroll and sets her up to be torn apart by Pyrrha's magnetism Semblance in the tournament arena. As she goes off-line, the pupils of her artificial eyes widen and the mechanical irises dull, just as if a human had died. RWBY: Amity Arena elaborates that Penny is less a true robot and more an Artificial Intelligence in a robot chassis, and that her human personality is owed to her being the first sentient AI created.
- Robot Girl: She's cute, girlish and desperately would like to please people and make friends. She's also a metallic combat robot designed to both look and act like a real girl and to kick arse when fighting.
- Robotic Reveal: After stopping a truck with her bare hands in "A Minor Hiccup", she confesses to not being a real girl, while showing that her hands have metal underneath the skin. Prior to that, the fact that her weapons come out of a compartment on her back was a big clue to many viewers that she wasn't human. Pyrrha ripping her to pieces reveals this to Remnant.
- Robot Wizard: Only living things can generate Aura, which gives humans who master the power the ability to manifest their power as special abilities that can seem like superhero powers or even magic-like in function. Although Penny is a robot, she is the very first artificial creation that is capable of sustaining an Aura. In Volume 7, Penny becomes the unplanned successor to the Winter Maiden's powers when her robotic body makes her the only one capable of safely reaching Fria. Her compassion for the dying Maiden creates the intimate connection needed for the powers to pass to her, transforming her into a genuine magic-user.
- Set Swords to "Stun": Her blades don't cut anyone living; to the point of the same blade that knocks a mook down slices into the ground without having changed trajectory. Justified with Aura and its protection.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Her lack of grace, both social and physical, is played for laughs. She is the first major character killed in Volume 3.
- Slasher Smile: Sports a convincing one twice, both times before finishing off opponents in the Vytal Tournament, once before slamming Dove and Sky into the ground, and the other before aiming about eight knives at Pyrrha. It's rather alarming given her usually innocent face.
- Spin to Deflect Stuff: Spinning her blades allows her to block gunfire—even airship gunfire, as seen during the fight in the docks.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: She appears and disappears from Team RWBY several times.Ruby: Aaah! Penny, where did you come from?!
- Storm of Blades: She can summon multiple blades from her back compartment that she controls with strings.
- Superpower Lottery: Penny Polendina is a Robot Girl with all the great strength, durability, enhanced reactions and sensory perception that implies; she can even see in the dark and detect people who appear to be invisible via Semblances. She's built to be the next generation of Huntress, which means she also has elite combat training, an elaborate set of eight swords she can control via wires, rocket boosters that allow her to fly, and the ability to produce an energy ray, which she often channels through her swords. At the end of Volume 7, she joins the ranks of the Four Maidens when the Winter Maiden dies and bequeathes her the power to protect it from Cinder's attempt to steal it.
- Super Strength: She can pull down a Bullhead that has been caught in her blades, with no grounding issues, and lift heavy objects via the same method, as seen when she defeats Russel and Sky of team CRDL by lifting the boulders they're holding onto and smashing them into the ground. She can also stop an on-coming vehicle in its tracks with her bare hands. The vehicle ends up totaled upon collision with her, but she doesn't even twitch. The latter definitely gets Ruby's attention.
- Swiss Army Weapon: Her Wave-Motion Gun has her turn her swords into beam-guns that fire in a synchronized pattern.
- Sword Beam: She can do these by folding the knives into some sort of gun form. The first time she does this, she combines all the lasers into one massive beam and blows apart two dropships in one go. The second time, she gets creative and fires them from individual blade-guns to hold off Pyrrha.
- Technicolor Fire: Penny's rocket boots produce green flames when in use. After recieving the power of the Winter Maiden, green flames form around her eyes every time she uses it due to Maiden powers being represented by the user's Aura color.
- Tempting Fate: Before she fights Pyrrha, she gleefully greets her and says "This is going to be so much fun!" These happen to be her last words in the Vale Arc, as she gets killed in the ensuing fight.
- The Thing That Would Not Leave: Initially, she sticks around because Ruby called her a "friend", much to the chagrin of Team RWBY. She stops once she gets recalled by her mysterious employer, later revealed to be Ironwood.
- To Be Lawful or Good: She finds herself torn between her loyalty to Ironwood and her friendship with Ruby. In the latter half of Volume 7, Penny is the only one of Ironwood's subordinates to openly question the ethics of his decisions or methods, whereas Winter and the Ace-Ops are determined to follow his orders even if they feel uncomfortable with them. When Fria bequeaths the Maiden powers to her, Penny decides to join Team RWBY in opposition to Ironwood rather than return to him.
- Toyless Toy Line Character: Until the second wave of blind box figures, and even then that's all she's got.
- Tron Lines: Her outfit sports bright green lines of light racing upwards, the only external sign (apart from her social awkwardness) that she's not quite human.
- Uncanny Valley: In-Universe. She looks human, but her mannerisms and speech are odd. She isn't familiar with having friends and her social skills are stilted, blunt and naive. After being knocked to the ground, she enthusiastically carries on a conversation, and doesn't think to get back to her feet until it's pointed out.
- Wave-Motion Gun: Generates an effect like this with her blades that cuts through a couple of Roman's aircraft with no effort. These kinds of aircraft withstood several Dust-powered attacks during the battle between Cinder and Glynda.
- We Can Rebuild Him: Or Her, in this case. She is killed late in Volume 3, but Pietro rebuilds her sometime before Volume 7 and she reunites with Team RWBY when they arrive in Atlas.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Penny calls her creator "father" but is insecure about the fact she's not a real girl; Atlas regards her as a military secret so even her team mates don't know what she is. Ironwood's stated mission is to replace human armies with robots to protect human life, and Penny believes her purpose is to save the world. Ruby tells Penny she does have a soul, but Penny's teammate associates with her only because they're ordered. Cinder tricks Pyrrha into publicly killing Penny to expose Penny's secret and frame Atlas for Vale's invasion. Penny's death focuses on her body shredding inhumanely like metal, then on the very human loss of light and life from her eyes. While Ironwood calls Penny a "girl" not a "robot", he seems less concerned with her death than with Ozpin's possible reaction to the reveal; this is unlike both Ruby and Pyrrha who are devastated despite knowing she's a robot.
- Youthful Freckles: Noticeable when we see her face up close.
- Zettai Ryouiki: Her normal outfit is a very short dress coupled with black-and-green Tron Lines leggings that reach so far up her thighs there is only a sliver of skin visible between them and her mini-dress.
Dr. Pietro Polendina
Voiced by: Dave Fennoy [EN]
Debut: The Greatest Kingdom*
One of Ironwood's most trusted and respected scientists, Dr. Pietro Polendina is an elderly engineer. In addition to working for the Atlesian military, Pietro volunteers at a pharmacy in Mantle.
- Absent-Minded Professor: He has been adjusting Maria's cybernetic eyes for years but she has to prod his memory before he remembers either who she is or why she's turned up in his pharmacy. He also doesn't immediately recognise Team RWBY despite his daughter's constant references to them.
- Early-Bird Cameo: After the dramatic conclusion of Penny and Pyrrha's fight in Volume 3, there is a brief shot of him from the back, gripping the side of his chair with a tightly-clenched fist.
- Fatherly Scientist: Pietro is a skilled roboticist who created P.E.N.N.Y, a breakthrough in cybernetic research due to the robot's ability to generate an Aura. While she's military R&D, Penny has been given the chance to develop a human persona and her relationship to her creator is that of father and daughter. When Pietro meets Team RWBY, he extends his fatherly attitude towards them, talking about how often his daughter has spoken of them, confiding in them his concerns about Ironwood despite having only just met them and worrying about them when they're captured by Ace-Ops. He is also visibly moved when Ruby and Weiss rest against Penny's shoulders, happy that Penny finally has true friends.
- Gadgeteer Genius: Pietro is introduced as one of Atlas's finest minds. He created Penny, who is the world's first synthetic being that is capable of generating an Aura. He also created Yang's state-of-the-art cybernetic arm and routinely maintains Maria's cybernetic eyes.
- Genius Cripple: Pietro is a brilliant robotics engineer and is paralyzed from the waist down. He gets around with a chair that possesses four mechanical legs and moves like a spider.
- Incurable Cough of Death: When first introduced, Pietro is shown to have a rather long, hoarse cough and is bound to a mobile chair that moves on spider-legs rather than wheels. In "Worst Case Scenario", Pietro reveals that he had to sacrifice parts of his Aura to create Penny, and that he has to sacrifice more every time he needs to rebuild her. As a result, his Aura contains gaping holes all over his body and he doesn't know if he has the ability to donate any more should Penny require further reactivation in the future.
Originally known as Alsius Academy until the Great War transformed it into an R&D facility and military HQ, the current academy is more militarised than the rest of Remnant would like to see.
Voiced By: Yssa Badiola [EN], Ami Naito [JP]
Debut: Never Miss a Beat*
Penny's partner in the tournament, a stiff and no-nonsense Atlesian cadet who follows orders to the letter.
- Facial Markings: There's an indistinct yellow mark right in the center of her forehead, seemingly shaped like the Sun.
- Flat Character: As the set-up to how Penny gets into the plot-important final round, Ciel appears only for the doubles round to show how Penny makes it through the tournament to the singles round. She is Penny's partner and minder, characterised by an obsession with punctuality and slight impatience when Penny doesn't stick to their schedule. She plays no further part in the story and so her characterisation is minimal.
- Hair Color Dissonance: Her hair is either black or a very dark blue.
- Literal-Minded: When Penny asks for a minute to talk to Ruby, she gives them a minute, complete with looking at her watch all this time.
- Locked Out of the Loop: Although she is Penny's team-mate in Volume 3, and is under orders to escort Penny everywhere, she doesn't know that Penny is a robot.
- Meaningful Name: In French, ciel means "sky" and soleil means "Sun". The sun used to be used for timekeeping, and she appears to have been assigned to Penny to ensure that Penny sticks to her prepared schedules and is never late. She also has sky-blue eyes.
- Nice Hat: Similarly to Coco, she wears a blue beret.
- Non-Action Guy: While she probably can fight due to the kind of series this is, her role in the tournament is just to fill in the roster and remind Penny not to take too long curb-stomping the opposition.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: She's forced to spend time with Penny, but looked to be enjoying herself well enough while at the Vytal vendors with her.
A rival team from Atlas that Weiss and Yang battle in the second round of the Vytal Festival Tournament. Despite originating from the usually strict and militant Atlas, their members are a bit... unorthodox. Their team name is pronounced 'funky'.
- Color Motif: No specific color, but rainbows and vibrancy. Neon is the term for the brightest tone a color can achieve, and is absolutely gaudy in her get-up. Their team name and Flynt seem to be based around funk, a music genre identified with very bright and vivid colors.
- Defeat Means Friendship: After being defeated in the doubles round by Weiss and Yang, Neon and Flynt quit with the Trash Talk and seem to respect them. Later on, they're among the students who jump to Ruby's aid during the Battle of Beacon and help defend the academy.
- Fastball Special: Using the sonic power of his weapon, Flynt can push Neon to her max speed on her rollerblades.
- Friendly Rival: They're introduced in Volume 3 as one of the teams representing Atlas in the tournment. When Flynt and Neon fight Weiss and Yang, Flynt is hostile to Weiss because her father put his father out of business and Neon spends the fight insulting Yang's weight. However, as soon as they lose the fight, Flynt compliments Weiss's willingness to sacrifice herself for her team-mate and Neon begs them join them for a party because she thinks they're completely awesome. The whole team is also willing to help Team JNPR and Oscar train during Volume 7; Neon again trash-talks her opponents but is quick to bestow compliments and praise once the fighting is over.
- Graceful Loser: Neon and Flynt initially appear to be upset that they lost the doubles round of the Vytal Festival Tournament, but Neon immediately goes into screams of how awesome Yang and Weiss were, and Flynt admits that Weiss's move was gutsy and he respects her for it. Although Team FNKI loses their sparring match against Team JNR and Oscar, Ivori is smiling while Neon and Flynt compliment the victors.
- Gradual Grinder: Their strategy in a nutshell. Using unavoidable wide-area attacks (Flynt) or Hit-and-Run Tactics (Neon) nullifying their opponent's attacks and grinding them down slowly over time, rather than trying to overwhelm them rapidly.
- I Shall Taunt You: Flynt and Neon spend just as much time trolling Weiss and Yang as they do fighting them. Flynt frequently insinuates that Weiss has no merit outside her father's money, and Neon teases Yang for her weight and tells Flynt that she'd be easy to take out. It ends up costing them the match.
- Pride Before a Fall: Their arrogance leads to their downfall during the tournament. In Flynt's case, he keeps repeating the same tactic while Neon ends up tripping because she spent too much time taunting Yang.
- Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: Though they both enjoy taunting their opponents, Flynt for the most part remains cool and level headed throughout the fight, where as Neon is an energetic troll against her enemy.
- Trash Talk: Flynt and Neon spend a lot of time taking digs at Weiss and Yang. It appears to be a large part of Neon's strategy against Yang, making her so frustrated she can't fight properly, to which she proves to be vulnerable.
Voiced by: Flynt Flossy [EN], Tooru Sakurai [JP]
Debut: Never Miss a Beat*
A musician with a dislike for the Schnees, and a self-duplication Semblance. He mostly supports Neon in combat, but is still extremely dangerous on his own thanks to his trumpet.
- Badass Arm-Fold: The first time we see Flynt, when Neon rushes to his side as the fight starts, he has his arms crossed while holding his trumpet in his right hand.
- Can't Tie His Tie: Though most likely a fashion choice, Flynt keeps his untied necktie around through his collar. No small wonder how it hasn't fallen off yet.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: His Semblance creates three copies of himself to quadruple his stopping power, and each one has a different accent color. However, he is always seen wearing a cyan tie and has a cyan band around his hat, so it's easy to keep track of where the actual Flynt is compared to his copies.
- Cool Shades: Wide sunglasses that hide most of his eyes, though they are visible when he looks down and over the shades.
- Crippling Over Specialization: Flynt can do one thing, and one thing only: blast sound waves. Even with his Semblance, he still can't do much more than 'point trumpet, blow trumpet'. The moment his opponents find a way around this, as happened with Weiss and Yang, he starts getting his ass kicked.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: Flynt only has one glove on his left hand, and only his right ear is pierced.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Yang defeats Flynt by crushing the opening of his trumpet shut. This causes the sonic blast he was emitting to be shot back in his face and knock out what was left of his aura.
- It's Personal: Flynt resents Weiss for her father's company running his own father's Dust shop out of business, and intends to fight her with that in mind.
- The Leader: Given his name, of Team FNKI.
- Nice Hat: Flynt wears a fedora with a cyan band wrapped around it, matching his tie. His Killer Quartet give Weiss a tip of their colour-coded hats after blasting her away.
- Self-Duplication: Flynt's Semblance allows him to create three color-coded duplicates of himself, amplifying the power of his sonic attacks. This makes him the third character shown so far able to create a second image of himself, though he's limited to three clones judging by the information Oobleck gives.
- Waistcoat of Style: He has the theme of a laid-back, easy-going jazz musician. As a result, he wears pin-stripe trousers, an untucked, open-collared greyish-white shirt; draped loosely over his shoulders is a a blue tie that matches the blue band on his charcoal grey fedora. To smarten up the casual way he wears his suit is a waistcoat, charcoal grey in the front to match the fedora and paler grey at the back to match the pin-stripes.
- Weapon Stomp: Flynt steps on Myrtenaster after knocking Weiss off her feet, causing her to lose it a few feet in front of her.
Voiced by: Meg Turney [EN], Konomi Fujimura [JP]
Debut: Never Miss a Beat*
A hyper-energetic cat Faunus who likes rollerblades. Not shy about dropping insults, Neon skates around the battlefield and uses a pair of nunchaku to deliver painful strikes on her foe.
- Awesome, but Impractical: Her rollerblades give her great mobility in a fight, but skating on uneven ground carries with it the risk of being tripped up. When she is distracted by Yang during their tournament fight, she loses her concentration and ends up falling, allowing Yang to defeat her.
- Bare Your Midriff: Wears a short, sky blue tank top.
- Bragging Theme Tune: Neon is a vivacious, colourful combat fighter who enjoys trash-talking her opponents while she's fighting them. She also revels in her skill and enjoyment of rollerblading. A techno-song called "Neon" plays during her fight with Yang focuses both on her habit of trash-talking opponents to bolster her image and talk-down her opponent's.
- Cat Smile: Neon has one continuously, seeming to confirm that she is a cat Faunus.
- Collared by Fashion: She wears a white collar with a bell on it, modeled after a cat's bell collar.
- Color Failure: Neon's color pallet becomes a muted gray after their defeat, though it quickly comes back once she's gotten over it.
- Eyelid Pull Taunt: Flashes Yang one of these briefly in their fight.
- Facial Markings: A small heart under her left eye.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: Neon is covered in various accessories that make it easier to count what part of her attire is symmetrical.
- Fighting with Chucks: Neon wields a Dust-powered set that change colors, that invoke glow sticks popular at raves and such. She even cracks them like a pair of glow sticks to activate them, causing them to light up with an ice blue color and elemental effect.
- Fingerless Gloves: Wears a dark blue one on her right hand. In Volume 7, she wears a white pair with paw prints on the palms that attach to her sleeves.
- Fragile Speedster: Neon is extremely fast and easily evades all of Yang's attacks, especially coupled with constantly taunting Yang to make her too angry to fight properly. Ultimately, however, when she moves too fast for her own good and trips into a geyser, it makes it easy for Yang to hit her. A single shot from Ember Celica immediately puts Neon out of the fight.
- Flash Step: Neon uses this to beat Yang up in the doubles round.
- Genki Girl: Neon is an incredibly energetic girl, with a personality to match her vibrant looks and Semblance. Both times she's lost a fight, she's responded by asking the other team to hang out with her.
- Girlish Pigtails: She has two sets of these: two big, puffy pigtails on each side of her head, and two smaller ones on the back of her head. She's a Genki Girl with a Rainbow Motif, so it fits.
- An Ice Person: Her nunchucks are energized with Dust, allowing her to use its effects on contact. She prefers ice Dust judging by her use of it on the Grimm and on Yang, further limiting her opponents' mobility in comparison to her own.
- Little Bit Beastly: She's a cat faunus, having a long tail and a Cat Smile by default.
- Modesty Shorts: Neon wears a thin blue top with spaghetti straps and which exposes the midriff, as well as a tiny pink micro-skirt. However, despite all the skin that she exposes, she wears purple hot-pants underneath her skirt, which ensures no further exposure occurs during battle.
- Multicolored Hair: She has orange hair with cyan streaks in her bangs.
- Odango Hair: In Volume 7, Neon wears her hair in two buns. Instead of the more common bun shape, she wears her hair in the rarer conical form; this makes it look like she has cat ears to go with her Faunus trait, which is a cat's tail.
- Pink Is Feminine: Neon's primary color, down to her tail.
- Punny Name: Try reading her name "Neon Katt" quickly and the sound would be similar to Nyan Cat. She's a cat Faunus who zips around with a rainbow trail, much like the Nyan Cat.
- Rainbow Motif: Neon leaves a rainbow wake in her path. Even her starry eyes are rainbow gradient!
- Rollerblade Good: Neon wears a pair of two-wheeled rollerblades, giving her a high amount of mobility around the battle field, though they are vulnerable to rough terrain.
- Survival Mantra: She repeats "never miss a beat" rapidly multiple times during the fight, and does so again just before she trips on a rock formation, enabling Yang to take her out.Neon: [as she is skating on a rough rock formation] Never miss a beat, never miss a beat, never miss a... [loses her balance] beat? [tears up just before tumbling over the formation and landing on a geyser, which erupts, blasting her upwards]
- Title Drop: The episode title, "Never Miss a Beat", is Neon's Survival Mantra.
- Troll: Neon never lets up her insults on Yang throughout the fight, and is clearly enjoying how upset she makes Yang.
- Whole Costume Reference: Her Volume 7 appearance was specified by Erin Winn to have been based on the costume of Jolyne Cujoh.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: Kobalt uses hand-to-hand combat when training with Oscar. Even though Oscar is fighting with his cane, he is still able to disarm Oscar with just his bare hands.
- Butt-Monkey: When Nora declares she's hungry enough to eat a sandwich the size of Kobalt, their training room manifests a giant sandwich that lands on top of Kobalt. An unamused Kobalt pops the creation, but is left with a large lettuce leaf on his head.
- Rapunzel Hair: Kobalt wears his hair in two long bunches at the back of his head. Even bound, his hair is so long that the tails extend just past his backside.
- Sunglasses at Night: Ivori wears a pair of sunglasses with white frames and yellow lenses. Even when they're training inside a training room with no windows, he still wears the sunglasses.
- Whip It Good: Ivori fights with a whip; in training with Team JNR, he is able to whip Ren's bullets out of the air rather than dodge.
The military of Atlas is very proficient and very active around the world. While many serve the general in Atlas, many others are stationed at different locations all around the world, be it on short-term or long-term assignment.
Voiced by: Elizabeth Maxwell [EN], Ayako Kawasumi [JP]
Debut: It's Brawl in the Family*
Weiss's older sister, and the direct subordinate of general Ironwood in the Atlesian military. Cold and aloof, but not above showing concern for Weiss's well-being. She briefly visits Beacon Academy to oversee the transport of additional Atlas security units.
Like her sister, Winter has the Schnee family Semblance, letting her generate glyphs that allow her to manipulate gravity and summon the spirits of anything she has killed in combat, alongside other abilities when combined with Dust. She fights with a rapier that has a dagger inside the hilt.
- Bifurcated Weapon: She wields a sword that splits into what appears to be an estoc and a saber.
- Big Sister Instinct: Though it's mixed with some Tough Love, it's abundantly clear that Winter is very protective of Weiss. Upon realizing that the Ace-Ops have captured Weiss when they arrive in Atlas, Winter threatens to hurt the guards unless they take off the restraints within 10 seconds, which they do.
- Blade Run: Plants both feet on Qrow's huge sword and flips to kick him in the head.
- Combat Stilettos: Her boots have some pretty prominent heels, and she kicks ass while wearing them, managing to keep up with Qrow.
- Complaining About Rescues They Don't Like: Winter isn't above prioritising missions over her own safety and will object when others don't share her attitude. During the Volume 7 battle to decide the fate of the Winter Maiden's power, Winter is knocked off her winged familiar and her Aura is shattered, forcing Penny to drop her pursuit of Cinder to catch Winter before she hits the ground. Because this allows Cinder to reach Fria first, Winter criticises Penny's decision, stating that her life doesn't matter. Penny begs to differ.
- Contralto of Danger: Elizabeth Maxwell provides a deep voice for Winter, who is able to keep up in a fight with Qrow.
- Cool Airship: A private white one with trailing blue banners behind it. It is distinctive enough that both Qrow and Weiss recognize it on sight.
- Cool Big Sis: Weiss is of this opinion, and while Winter can be a bit cold she certainly cares about her sister's personal wellbeing more than anything else. It especially shows while they're in private, with Winter taking time out of her schedule to have lunch with Weiss, give her a practical lesson with her Semblance, and valuable family advice.
- Dope Slap: She smacks Weiss whenever she thinks her little sister is being a little too silly. Once when not receiving actual information on Weiss's well-being, another when she doesn't try hard enough at Summon Magic.
- Dual Wielding: Like Blake, she has a second blade hidden inside the first one.
- Gentle Touch vs. Firm Hand: Played with. Volume 3 contrasts the different ways Winter and Qrow mentor their younger relatives. Qrow is the Gentle Touch, talking through issues, offering advice, and encouraging his nieces to think like real Huntresses all while playing video games. Winter is the Firm Hand, commanding Weiss to always be her best, criticising her techniques to improve them and driving her relentlessly until she gets it right. However, the show also reveals that, if the need arises, Qrow's willing to let his charges become bait while Winter can soften her approach to become more motherly.
- An Ice Person: One of Winter's swords is loaded with ice Dust, and all of her summoned minions are made of spectral ice. She's also shown to be able to summon a localized blizzard in the Volume 5 Weiss trailer, and apparently generate some kind of wave of snow or ice able to knock Myrtanser out of Weiss's hand.
- Icy Blue Eyes: To a greater degree than Weiss. While she is caring at the same time, she can be cold to her sister, striking her upside the head just for misinterpreting a question. Where Weiss kept others away by being confrontational, Winter's voice never comes above an indoor voice and she treats even her challenger, Qrow, with critical disdain. To match this persona, her eyes are a steely gray-blue.
- Instant Runes: All Schnee have the ability to produce glyphs that can perform a range of functions. Winter's mastery of her glyphs is more advanced than her sister's because, as the older sister, she's had more time to develop her abilities. She displays the ability to summon Beowolves and flocks of miniature Nevermores and can shrink her summon circle down to the palm of her hand or grow it to much large proportions to place underneath her feet or behind her body.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Even though Winter is a bit callous and aloof (even Dope Slapping Weiss at one point), she deeply loves Weiss and acts as a mentor figure to her, even teaching her how to use her summoning Semblance.
- Lady of War: To contrast Qrow's BFS, Winter uses a slender sword, and is very aloof, dignified, elegant and precise, though she can be particularly aggressive. It must run in the family.
- Leitmotif: A majestic, orchestral movement plays when her presence is made known.
- Mundane Object Amazement: Is perplexed when Weiss mentions the bunk bed she shares with Ruby.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: Discussed. She follows Ironwood's orders without question. When Penny expresses concern about some of the orders Ironwood is issuing, Winter tells her that he's trying to protect the whole of Remnant. When Ironwood instructs Winter to forcefully take the Winter Maiden's power, Penny is deeply disturbed by what they're about to do. Winter acknowledges that she has similar feelings and agrees there's nothing good about what they're doing, but also states that her feelings will not alter the actions she's going to take. Instead, Winter tells Penny to use her feelings to help identify right and wrong and that this struggle with personal feelings is what makes someone human. Later, after Penny now has the Winter Maiden's power and Weiss is branded a wanted criminal along with her friends, Winter reluctantly lets them have a head-start while calling for medical treatment.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Winter is on the receiving end of one of the more brutal beatdowns in the series, sustaining critical injuries due to having fight past her Aura broken. When Penny is comforting Fria in her final moments, Winter puts herself between Cinder and Penny to buy time for the power transfer, even though her Aura had already been broken prior. Cinder summarily beats the ever-living hell out of Winter, leaving her with a black eye, burn marks across her torso and left arm, various open wounds, and her hair is down.
- Number Two: Winter functions as Ironwood's right-hand woman and, as his second in command, her uniform is more similar to Ironwood's uniform than the Ace-Ops, while being more feminine and containing elements of her Schnee heritage. When he speaks to Mantle about his intentions for protecting them and keeping them strong, his broadcasts are followed by instructions from Winter on what rules the citizens must follow. He confides in her everything he knows about the war against Salem, and chooses her to become his candidate to receive the dying Winter Maiden's powers.
- Passed-Over Inheritance: In the backstory, Winter is implied to have been disinherited by her father in favor of Weiss for escaping his control to join the Atlesian military. While discussing the situation with Ironwood, Jacques says he's unwilling to forgive the former for stealing his daughter away from him. Ironwood, however, is annoyed at Jacques throwing this accusation at him multiple times before.
- Peek-a-Bangs: She has a long fringe that sweeps down the right side of her face partially obscuring her right eye. In her concept art, her right eye is covered by the fringe, but that version didn't make it into the show.
- Power Glows: Whatever she was about to do to Qrow right before Ironwood stopped her, it caused her skin and eyes to glow a bright white.
- Prim and Proper Bun: She wears a high bun that is very slightly offset to her left. She's a high-ranking member in the Atlesian military and a stern and professional woman who carries herself with dignity and elegance.
- Promoted to Parent: According to The World of RWBY, Winter is a substitute for Weiss's absentee mother.
- Reverse Arm-Fold: Like her general, Winter always reverts to clasping her hands behind her back, a sign of her military service. She even maintains this stance when she is pacing a room in frustration.
- Red Herring: Winter's first name gives the impression that she is or soon may be one of the four Maidens. In Volume 7, it's revealed that she isn't the Winter Maiden yet, but has been assigned by Ironwood to take care of Fria, the elderly current Maiden. In the finale "The Enemy of Trust", she, alongside Penny, is sent to transfer the Maiden's power to herself, but Cinder attacks. Winter intervenes, but has her Aura shattered and is beaten to near unconsciousness by her, while Penny is the one who receives Fria's title and power.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Penny is the Red Oni and Winter is the Blue Oni. Winter and Penny act as Ironwood's closest aides in the fight against Salem. Winter is a cold and calculating human who seeks to bury her emotions underneath dutiful, rational behaviour. Penny is a warm and outgoing robot, who speaks from the heart and questions orders that she fears are morally questionable. The pair disagree constantly over their beliefs with Penny favouring humanity over Winter's professionalism, ultimately causing the dying Winter Maiden's power to pass to Penny instead of the intended successor, Winter.]]
- So Proud of You: After Weiss returns to Atlas, she and Winter get the opportunity to spend time together and train together. Winter ends up concluding with approval that Weiss has grown a lot as a person and has come a long way from the young girl who didn't have the strength to break free of her father.
- Stern Teacher: Her methods of testing and teaching Weiss are very stern. In Weiss's Volume 5 trailer, she throws a nonstop horde of summoned Beowolves at her sister, and eventually steps it up to using waves of ice and snow to disarm her and leave her vulnerable... and then lets the Beowolves begin to swarm Weiss while she's pinned down. It's only when Weiss calls out for her to stop that Winter dismisses them and in the moments leading up to it the look on her face was one of absolute terror. Afterward, Winter reminds Weiss that she won't always be there to protect her, and that she'll have to get much better if she ever hopes to be able to leave the safety of her home.
- Summon Magic: Has been shown to be able to summon a flock of tiny Nevermore Ravens as well as a full sized Beowolf, all of them made of ice. The Volume 5 Weiss trailer shows that she can also summon several Beowolves at once and coordinate their attacks, and dismiss them just as quickly. When battling Cinder in midair, Winter calls forth a Manticore as a mount and to lauch ranged attacks.
- Temporal Theme Naming: Women with seasonal names in RWBY are all very plot significant. Winter is a role model for her younger sister, Weiss, exerting a strict and affectionate maternal influence on her. Winter is a Huntress-trained military subordinate of Ironwood and has an ongoing personality clash with Qrow, who is loyal to Ozpin. When introduced, she is connected to Ozpin's secret group that protects Remnant from secret threats; however, she is only entrusted with the full truth after the fall of Beacon. It's revealed in Volume 7 that Ironwood has indeed chosen her to become the next Winter Maiden by manipulating the circumstances of the current Winter Maiden, Fria, to increase the likelihood that her power will transfer to Winter when she dies.
- Wall Run: She runs straight up a 90-degree pillar during her fight with Qrow.
For more information on Caroline Cordovin, please see RWBY: Anima
The Ace Operatives is a group of five elite soldiers who are both licensed Huntsmen and General Ironwood's personal enforcers. Each has been made aware of the wider conflict with Salem and are involved with Ironwood's plans to change the course of the fight against Salem.
- Benevolent Conspiracy: Ozpin created a group of key individuals who were brought into the loop about the existence and threat of Salem and the need to protect the four Relics. After the fall of Beacon, Ironwood decided he needed to replicate this in Atlas to carry on the fight in the absence of Ozpin. The Ace-Ops form part of this inner circle, along with Winter and Penny.
- Conflicting Loyalty: While the Ace-Ops are first and foremost loyal to General Ironwood, throughout Volume 7 they all slowly begin bonding with the protagonists, specifically Team RWBY and Qrow. So when Ironwood declares his decision to abandon Mantle and raise Atlas to the heavens and Team RWBY declares their intent to stay and fight, the Ace-Ops display this to varying degrees. Vine, Elm, and Clover bury their feelings and try to carry out Ironwood's arrest orders, their true feelings only being made known as the fights go on. Marrow meanwhile desperately tries to talk Weiss down while fighting her. Harriet is the only subversion, having a Hidden Disdain Reveal and attempting to kill Ruby as they fight.
- Consummate Professional: Harriet is shocked when she hears the students talking of bonding as friends and even Elm laughs off the notion. Harriet explains to Ruby that she trusts the Ops' with her life and they return the favour. However, despite getting along with each other, none of them are friends off the clock and they never confuse the job with friendship. Their relationship is strictly professional, though this is muddied with a lot of friendly interactions between the team during the season. Ultimately, their inferior teamwork costs them in their fight with Team RWBY, as their internal bickering over how much force is necessary to bring them in distracts them and allows the heroes to defeat them.
- Custom Uniform: The Ace-Ops wear individualized uniforms, in comparison to the strict standards all other Atlas military are held to.
- Divided We Fall: Ace-Ops is a team full of strong and very different personalities, held together by Clover's leadership. When Ironwood orders Team RWBY's arrest, Clover is absent, leaving the four remaining members of the team to deal with the arrest themselves. Their personalities very quickly begin to clash. Marrow holds back, conflicted about arresting Team RWBY, and is therefore defeated by Weiss. Vine holds back and fails to calm down Elm, who feels so betrayed she lashes out in anger; the pair are therefore defeated by a perfectly synchronized Yang and Blake. Harriet reveals she has been disdainful of Team RWBY all along, believed they would end up betraying Ironwood and advocates simply killing them. She is so angry that she doesn't see Weiss and crashes face-first into a wall of ice while using her speed Semblance.
- Elites Are More Glamorous: The Kingdom of Atlas boasts a powerful military and an elite Huntsman Academy. The Ace-Ops are an elite team made up of the very best Huntsmen in the kingdom who also became the very best military unit in the kingdom. Volume 7 exclusively focuses on how the heroes interact with Ace-Ops and their military commanders, Winter Schnee and General Ironwood. Both the military and the Academy remain in the background so that soldiers, Huntsmen, students and teachers never become part of the main storyline.
- Friendship Denial: While they're a team and trust one another with their lives, it's strictly professional, with Elm and Harriet telling Team RWBY point-blank that the Ace-Ops are not friends. This bites them in the ass when they try to arrest them; Team RWBY are close friends who have mastered teamwork while the Ace-Ops is brought down by in-fighting over how best to apprehend them.
- Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Gender Inverted. Elm and Harriet are both extremely physical fighters, with styles that favor getting in close and using brute force. In comparison, the men on the team primarily have ranged weapons with Vine and Marrow in particular providing ranged support for their respective partners.
- Hero Antagonist: Ace-Ops and Team RWBY are at logger-heads over how best to handle the threat to Mantle's safety until they finally fall out over the issue and oppose each other. When Ironwood realises Salem is on her way to Atlas, he changes his plans. He institutes martial law to de-power the Atlesian Council and decides to raise Atlas high into the atmosphere to protect the Maiden and two Relics, abandoning Mantle to its doom. Team RWBY are horrified, but Ace-Ops loyally follows Ironwood's instructions. Ironwood therefore instructs Ace-Ops to arrest Team RWBY, forcing the two teams to fight.
- Just Following Orders: Invoked twice during Volume 7, both times in relation to Team RWBY. The first time, the Ace-Ops are reassured that there are no hard feelings over the arrest since they were simply following their orders. The second time it comes up, it's more accusatory. Team RWBY are expressing their disgust over Ace-Ops accepting Ironwood's plan to abandon the citizens of Mantle to die.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: At the end of the day, the Ace-Ops are soldiers in the military. Their loyalty is to their General in all things. When Ironwood gives the order to arrest the heroes so they won't interfere with his plan to abandon Mantle and relocate Atlas, all of the Ace-Ops follow through with the order. Some of them may not like having to turn on the people they like, but they still give it their all to bring RWBY, JNPR, and Qrow in.
- Technician vs. Performer: The Ace-Ops are General Ironwood's response to Ozpin's team system, an inpersonal five-man team assigned based on technical performance as opposed to a four-man team created through happenstance and choice. Unlike the Academy team structure, the Ace-Ops do not have an assigned partner and are not encouraged to form any sort of personal bonds outside of their work. Members are selected based upon complementary Semblances and fighting styles, with no regard for personality or personal choice. At their very best, the Ace-Ops are a well-oiled machine that functions perfectly as a unit. But when deprived of Clover's Good Fortune and leadership, the team cannot overcome their personal conflicts and are ultimately defeated by the more adaptive, close-knit Team RWBY.
- Theme Naming: They are all based on Aesop's Fables. Clover is based on A Fisherman's Good Luck, Elm and Vine are named after The Elm and the Vine, Harriet is based on the hare from The Tortoise and the Hare, and Marrow is based on the dog from The Dog and Its Reflection.
- To Be Lawful or Good: Throughout the season, the Ace-Ops uphold the rule of law while individual members acknowledge that Ironwood's policies have caused harm to the very citizens they're supposed to be protecting. This conflict ultimately comes to a head during the final episodes of Volume 7. When Ironwood decides to leave the citizens of Mantle to die and orders anyone opposed to this plan arrested, the Ace-Ops carry out the General's orders without question, accepting morally questionable orders and putting obedience to their superior officer over personal feelings.
- True Companions: Discussed. Given their own experiences, Team RWBY initially assumes that the Ace-Ops are this until Ruby says she wants to have her friends' backs the way Ace-Ops has each others. Elm states friendships are for the school years and Harriet scoffs at they idea that Ace-Ops could be friends: Ace-Ops is a team of co-workers who trust each other with their lives but who never confuse professionalism with friendship. This works to their disadvantage when they're ordered to apprehend Team RWBY. Both teams are emotionally charged but Ace-Ops falls to in-fighting over how best to handle Team RWBY. Their teamwork falls apart, which enables Team RWBY to defeat them.
- Two Girls to a Team: The Ace-Ops are one of the first Huntsman teams shown with more than four active members. The three male members are Clover, Vine and Marrow, while Elm and Harriet bump it to five.
- With Us or Against Us: The Ace-Ops ultimately adopt this stance, as General Ironwood takes more extreme actions in the battle against Salem. When Ironwood declares martial law, the Ace-Ops turn on Team RWBY, Qrow, and Robyn when they disagree with Ironwood's plan to deal with Salem's incoming army. Both groups still share the same goal of defeating Salem, but Ironwood and the Ace-Ops treat them as enemies to varying degrees when it becomes clear they won't abandon Mantle.
Voiced By: Christopher Wehkamp [EN]
Debut: The Greatest Kingdom*
A tall man who is the leader of Ace-Ops. He fights with Kingfisher, a weapon that can be cast and reeled in like a fishing pole. His Semblance brings good fortune to himself and those around him.
- The Ace: Only the best graduates of the Huntsman academy join the Atlesian military. The very best of those join the unit known as the Ace-Operatives, a unit of five people famed throughout the Kingdom of Atlas as being the most talented and gifted Huntsmen in the kingdom. Clover is the leader of this unit, and is responsible for keeping the team at their best. He is therefore a charming and confident military leader who serves as Ironwood's right-hand man and is considered the best of the best. He is skilled enough to challenge the abilities of experienced, elite fighters such as Qrow and Tyrian, and is only defeated when they both concentrate their attention on him instead of each other.
- Animal Motifs: The Kingfisher, the namesake of his weapon and inspiration for his design. Clover's hair in particular resembles the spiky crest of several species of Kingfisher. The bird is also an ancient symbol of Good Fortune, associated with prosperity, peaceful seas, and the winter solstice. Though Classical Mythology connects the bird's origins to a tragic death at sea.
- Born Lucky: Clover appears to be blessed with charm and surrounds himself with lucky symbols, such as a horseshoe, lucky rabbit's foot, and a badge that is a combination of a four leaf clover and horseshoe. He gets on well with people, his fights always benefit him. If he engages in reckless or dangerous acts, he always makes it through them without a scratch. These are all clues as to what his Semblance is: the power of good luck itself.
- By-the-Book Cop: His RWBY: Amity Arena profile name-drops this trope to praise him, seeing his obedience to rules and unwavering loyalty in his superiors as ideal. But this inflexible attitude proves a major disadvantage to Clover, leading to a confrontation with Qrow and Robyn when they question Ironwood's orders. In the resulting chaos, Tyrian is able to gain the upper hand and kill Clover, before making his escape.
- Character Tic: Clover has a tendency to slide his thumb along the edge of the badge he wears on his chest. The badge is a four-leaf clover framed by a horseshoe, both symbols of good luck. The gesture is always accompanied by a slight glow and is followed by either Clover doing something reckless or dangerous that somehow turns out well for him, or before a seemingly random event occurs that benefits him in some way. The gesture is heavily implied to be how he activates his Good Luck Semblance.
- Color-Coded Eyes: Clover has pale green eyes, which fits in with his lucky symbolism. In a play on his name and in connection to his luck-based themes, he wears a badge that is a four-leaf clover framed by a horseshoe His pale green eyes therefore fits in with this symbolism.
- Combat Pragmatist: Clover is a decent guy, but he doesn't have a problem fighting dirty if the situation calls for it. In the fight against Qrow and Tyrian, he uses his hook to repeatedly trip or tie them up, and at one point grabs Tyrian by his ponytail to yank him in.
- CynicIdealist Duo: In Volume 7, Clover and Qrow are paired together for missions. Qrow is cynical, depressive and prefers to work alone while Clover is upbeat, chatty and prefers working with a team. Qrow's misfortune Semblance is uncontrollable and causes constant inconvenience for himself and others, while Clover has a controllable good fortune Semblance which aids him in combat. They both have a history of Undying Loyalty to a morally grey Huntsman leader: Qrow for Ozpin and Clover for Ironwood. However, Qrow has learned the bitter consequences of Undying Loyalty while Clover hasn't; this differing experience ultimately drives an insurmountable wedge between them.
- Dies Wide Open: Clover's eyes visibly dull and become vacant, leaving him staring off into space as he passes away.
- Exposed to the Elements: Clover's uniform is sleeveless with a v-neck, showing off his muscular shoulders and arms. His Aura allows him to operate without issue, but he still stands out among the many people that choose to dress appropriately for the freezing temperatures.
- Fatal Flaw: His loyalty to General Ironwood. In "With Friends Like These", when General Ironwood ordered the arrests of RWBY, JNR, Oscar and Qrow, Clover blindly follows his orders, which is one of the factors that leads to the Manta crashing. During his fight with Qrow and Tyrian, Clover is so focused on following orders that he initially focuses solely on Qrow, leading Tyrian to manipulate the situation in his favor and ultimately kill him.
- Fearless Fool: Justified as a result of his luck-based Semblance. Clover isn't actually a fool or reckless with the lives of others, but his abilities permit him to get away with things that would normally be incredibly dangerous. While his team handle highly-unstable Dust gems with care, Clover casually tosses one around with very little concern. When others exit carriers by taking in the area, Clover typically uses a Leap of Faith and is even called a show-off for his antics. He finally pushes things too far, when he continues fighting Qrow even when Tyrian escapes and joins the battle. His confidence that he could defeat both his friend and the deranged Serial Killer forces an unlikely Enemy Mine scenario, allowing Tyrian an opening to kill Clover and frame Qrow for the murder.
- First-Name Basis: Despite their strict military code and professionalism, Clover has a very close relationship with Ironwood. The general only allows friends to call him 'James', and Clover is one of the people who has his permission to do so. When he argues with Qrow over blindly following Ironwood's orders, he explains that he trusts 'James' with his life.
- Good Luck Charm: Clover carries a number of traditional lucky charms on his person, such as a rabbit's foot hanging on his belt and a four-leaf clover framed by a horseshoe on his left breast. When he arrives after capturing the protagonists, he is swinging a horseshoe in his left hand.
- Go Out with a Smile: When Clover dies, it's with a gentle smile on his face. The dying Clover tells Qrow that someone should take the fall and Qrow angrily tells him that he'll make sure Ironwood does. Clover wishes him good luck, then dies while watching the morning sun rise with a smile on his face.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: In "With Friends Like These", Clover is fatally stabbed in the back by Tyrian wielding Qrow's sword.
- Improbable Weapon User: Clover uses Kingfisher, a weapon that resembles a fishing pole. He uses it like a grappling hook to allow him to swing away to the rooftops and the extension of the cable winds and unwinds with the same sound as a fishing pole casting and reeling in its line. Clover also uses the horseshoe he carries for luck as a projectile and melee weapon against Qrow.
- In the Back: After a long fight that breaks his Aura, Clover's left exhausted and unprepared for a surprise attack from behind. Tyrian sneaks up on Clover while he's talking to Qrow and stabs him in the back with Harbinger.
- Irony: Clover and Qrow tend to work very closely together on missions and they each have a Semblance that counteracts the other: Clover's Semblance brings him good luck in battle and requires aura to function, while Qrow's Semblance brings misfortune to himself and others and is permanently active regardless of aura. As a result, they have a running joke between them regarding how Clover is and how his mere presence can change a situation for the better. When Qrow, Clover and Tyrian fight each other, Clover manages to disarm Qrow, who punches Clover so hard that Clover's Aura breaks, but Qrow's is still intact. This ends the influence of good luck on the battle, but leaves misfortune in play. Distracted by their argument over whether Ironwood can be trusted, neither of them notice Tyrian grab Qrow's weapon until he's run Clover through the chest with it. The battle therefore ends when Clover quite literally runs out of luck.
- The Leader: Clover is in charge of the Ace-Ops. He is professional and business-like when it comes to issuing orders and making sure his followers know what the mission is and what's expected of them. However, he also has a friendly personality, jokes around with his team and is quick to apologize to the protagonists for the way they were initially introduced.
- Leap of Faith: Others pull off fancy jumps to get down from high places or exit a transport. Clover simply falls backwards, and lets his Good Luck ensure he lands safely.
- Meaningful Name: The four-leaf clover is a plant associated with good luck. Clover's Semblance is Good Fortune, and he surrounds himself with lucky symbols, including a badge he wears in the shape of a four-leaf clover that is framed by a horseshoe. Whenever he activates his Semblance, he strikes the badge with his thumb.
- Positive Friend Influence: Clover is noted to be a man that brings out the best in others, encouraging others to see the good they have accomplished. In particular, he is quick to call Qrow out for trying to downplay just how important his guidance has been to his nieces and their teammates.
- Sleeves Are for Wimps: Clover notably doesn't wear sleeves, even when out on the frozen tundra. It shows off his Heroic Build and adds to his tough appearance.
- Tempting Fate: During the Ace Op's battle in the mines, Clover teases his team and asks what they would do without him. A few episodes later, that rhetorical question is answered when the team goes into combat while Clover is on another assignment: their personalities clash and their teamwork falls apart, allowing Team RWBY to defeat them. Clover himself dies on the assignment, permanently depriving the team of his leadership.
- Tragic Bromance: Clover spends most of the volume befriending Qrow; they always work together and become very close, with there being an ongoing running joke between them that Clover can bring good luck to anything he gets involved in. When Ironwood orders the protagonists be arrested, Clover follows his orders without question. This leads to the airship they're travelling on with Robyn and Tyrian crashing, and a battle ensuing between Qrow, Clover and Tyrian. During the fight, Qrow and Clover make it clear they don't want to fight each other, but Qrow is a cynic who feels like all his friendships end up this way while Clover trusts Ironwood with his life and really wanted to be able to trust Qrow, too. The fight only ends when Clover disarms Qrow, who punches him so hard in response that Clover's Aura breaks. Tyrian grabs Qrow's weapon and impales Clover from behind before making his escape, effectively framing Qrow for Clover's death.]]
- Undying Loyalty: To James Ironwood. He adamantly trusts Ironwood with his life, and will follow whatever orders he is given regardless of his personal feelings. After he is fatally stabbed by Tyrian, he subverts this. He says someone had to be the fall guy and drops whatever animosity he had during his fight with Qrow. When Qrow vows to make Ironwood take the fall, his last words are to wish Qrow luck.
- Winds of Destiny, Change: Clover's Semblance brings good fortune. This allows him to shift the potential fate of either himself or others. When Dust collapses from a mining tunnel, his Semblance prevents him from being caught in the resulting explosion. When he fights a Petra Gigas, he activates his Semblance to allow him to successfully pull off an almost impossible move that involves him casting his weapon from a distance, hooking itself under and around the Grimm's mask, giving him the perfect opportunity to rip the Geist out of its stone body.
Voiced By: Anairis Quinones [EN]
Debut: A New Approach*
A woman with a competitive and chatty personality, who fights with a pair of gauntlets called Fast Knuckles. Her Semblance gives her incredible speed.
- Animal Motif: Hares. Her nickname is 'Hare' and she has blond tufts at the front of her hairline that resemble long ears. Her Semblance is super-speed, which alludes to the stereotype of hares being extremely fast runners.
- Character Tics: Harriet flicks her nose whenever she feels a strong emotion like excitement or rage.
- Fast as Lightning: When she activates her speed Semblance, Harriet's eyes begin to spark with lightning effects. When she starts running at super-speed, she leaves a trail of lightning effects behind her.
- Friendly Rivalry: When she's introduced to the protagonists, Harriet immediately wants to pit skills against them. Vine warns her that not everything has to be seen as a competition.
- Hartman Hips: Downplayed. While she has a noticeable pear-shaped figure with her wide hips and strong thighs, she is at a realistic standard and not cartoonish in her proportions.
- Hidden Disdain Reveal: Harriet is a very competition-driven individual. She is constantly eying up people she can test her skills against, even if they're supposed to be allies. When Team RWBY resists being arrested by Ace-Ops, Harriet is incredulous that these kids want to fight the best Huntsmen in Atlas. As they fight, she sneers that she had Team RWBY pegged from the start, indicating that she'd been expecting them to turn on Ironwood from the beginning. As the fight progresses, Marrow complains that Harriet is using excessive force against someone she is supposed to only be arresting.
- Hit-and-Run Tactics: Harriet runs circles around a massive Geist, attacking and taunting it as a distraction while it struggles to catch her. By the time it's managed to turn and swing at her, Harriet is already gone and attacking from the other side.
- Inertia Is a Cruel Mistress: Harriet's Super Speed makes her a powerful and almost untouchable foe, but a sudden obstruction will turn that speed against her. With her arms bound, Hare still charges at top speed at Ruby, only for Weiss to suddenly create a wall of ice for her to slam into which breaks her aura and knocks her out.
- Lightning Bruiser: Between her Semblance and her gauntlets, Harriet can inflict massive damage to her opponents in the span of a few seconds. She is also more durable than average Fragile Speedster, considering she could briefly stop a Megoliath's stomp, though it did cause her Aura to flicker afterwards.
- Multicolored Hair: Harriet has a very close-cropped brown hairstyle, with a thicker head of black hair on top. At the front of her head are some longer tufts of hair that are blonde in colour.
- Murder Is the Best Solution: Harriet is highly competitive and throws her all into every battle she's in. When ordered to arrest Team RWBY, Harriet states she never liked them and advocates killing them for disobeying Ironwood. Marrow calls her out, reminding her that Ironwood's orders are only to arrest them.
- Murderous Thighs: Harriet has a very muscular lower body, with most of her physical strength in her legs. When her arms are restrained during battle, she immediately switches to attacking with her powerful legs and uses wrestling moves to choke and throw her opponent.
- Not So Similar: To Ruby. They're both high-speed combatants who are often the first to charge into battle. But while Ruby is sweet, bubbly, and values teamwork with her closest friends, Harriet is aloof, brutally honest, and fiercely competitive even with her teammates. Ruby heavily prefers to use Crescent Rose over hand-to-hand, while Harriet specializes in overwhelming her foes with her Power Fist.
- Personality Powers: Discussed in her RWBY: Amity Arena bio. The In-Universe developers of the game mull over the idea that a person's Semblance is a reflection of who they are. When analyzing her Semblance and trying to figure out why she has the fastest speed-type they've come across, they hypothesize it's reflective of her incredibly impatient personality.If Semblances are reflections of who you are, your soul, then perhaps Harriet's speed has something to do with her incredible impatience? Because nothing in this world moves quickly enough for Operative Bree.
- Power Fist: Her weapons, Fast Knuckles, are a pair of gauntlets that are connected by an exoskeleton that covers Harriet's arms and upper back. They're strong enough to pulverise a caved-in rock face with one hit.
- Speed Blitz: Harriet's Semblance is super speed, and this enables her to inflict these on her enemies.
- Token Evil Teammate: Harriet is obsessed with competition and will regard even allies as a challenge she must compete against. Vine admonishes her for this behaviour when they're first properly introduced to Team RWBY; her only interest in the heroes is to see what they're capable of. Team RWBY and Ace-Ops end up fighting when Ironwood orders Team RWBY's arrest and the heroes resist. Harriet tells Ruby that she had Team RWBY pegged from the start and proceeds to try and defeat her violently, even attempting to strangle her with her legs. In the middle of the fight, she and Marrow argue about it: she admonishes Marrow for holding back against Weiss while he criticizes her for behaving excessively towards Ruby, whom she's only supposed to arrest.
- Wrestler in All of Us: Harriet is an extremely powerful physical fighter, who is capable of pulling a hurricanrana in battle. When she fights Ruby, Ruby manages to bind her arms with Harriet's own bola. Harriet continues fighting by wrestling Ruby with her legs.
Voiced By: Mick Lauer [EN]
Debut: A New Approach*
A dog Faunus who pretends to be more aloof that he really is. He uses Fetch, a rifle that can transform into a bladed boomerang. His Semblance allows him to freeze a target in place with a single command.
- Animal Motifs: Dogs. Marrow's a canine Faunus, he uses his Semblance to paralyze Grimm with the command "Stay", and his boomerang-rifle's name is Fetch.
- The Baby of the Bunch: Marrow is the rookie of the team and is teased a lot by his team mates for being more brash and emotional than thoughtful and for pretending to not care when he does. He looks up to Clover and, when they leave the mine after defeating the Petra Gigas, attempts to adopt Clover's stride and stern expression.
- Battle Boomerang: His weapon, Fetch, switches between a assault rifle and a precision-guided bladed boomerang.
- Conflicting Loyalty: Of all the Ace-Ops, Marrow is the member who appears to struggle the most with some of Ironwood's orders. He is the one most open about his reservations with fighting the protagonists. He's the only one who doesn't immediately draw his weapon, repeatedly tries to talk Weiss down during their fight, and criticises Harriet when she tells him off for not using lethal force.
- Damned by Faint Praise: Marrow's RWBY: Amity Arena bio describes him as "better" than other Faunus ("riff raff") because of his loyalty to Ironwood. The entry implies that there's nothing else about Marrow that's worth praising, solely because he's Faunus and despite the fact he's qualified to be an elite operative.
- Dogs Are Dumb: The rest of Marrow's team-mates make a number of comments at different times that indicate they associate his dog-Faunus nature with stupidity. They complain about being his babysitter rather than his team-mates and mock him as brainless. His actual behaviour indicates he's intelligent enough, but he's young, new to the team, and has an excitable personality. Even Ironwood takes one look at Marrow enthusiastically communicating with some soldiers in the background before ordering Clover to not allow Marrow to join the team on a mission he wants handled delicately; Clover laughs at the assessment, but agrees with it. In practice, Marrow handles serious scenarios soberly when the situation calls for it, but he receives little recognition from his team or commander over his nuanced behaviour and instead suffers stereotyping for his more 'dog-like' behaviour.
- Innocent Blue Eyes: Marrow is the youngest member of his team, with large blue eyes similar to some canine breeds. It adds to his overall youthful appearance, in comparison to his more seasoned teammates.
- Little Bit Beastly: Marrow possesses a tail, which identifies him as a Faunus of the canine variety.
- Logical Weakness: Marrow's Semblance lets him immobilize others, even crowds, but only those he's focused on and pointing at. If he loses his focus, the targets are released. When he freezes an angry crowd after they're attacked, he turns his attention to Robyn and the injured Fiona. This releases the crowd, allowing Joanna to fire an arrow at him. He is defeated by Weiss when she and her summoned White Knight attack from different directions; forced to split his focus, he's defeated by Weiss while concentrating on the Knight.
- Minority Police Officer: Marrow is an elite operative in a kingdom with a long history of discrimination against Faunus, and vocal about following the rule of law even while admitting that it isn't equal. Though he is a skilled Huntsman with a powerful Semblance, Marrow is not taken as seriously as his human coworkers and notably has not modified his uniform like the rest of his team. He remains loyal to Ironwood even while his policies harm the Faunus living in Mantle, and he attends the event at the Schnee Manor as a guest in contrast to the many Faunus working as servants. How many other Faunus serve in Atlas's military is unknown, since Marrow is the only one shown so far in the series.
- Noodle Incident: In "A New Approach", Marrow is overheard bragging about the third time he was kicked out of somewhere. Clover interrupts him so that the two groups can formally meet, and the story is never revisited. Where it was or what Marrow did to be thrown out on multiple occasions remains a mystery.
- No Poker Face: Marrow tries to claim he's not interested in making friends with Team RWBY, but his aloof demeanour is sabotaged by his wagging tail. He turns out to have quite an excitable personality that is constantly revealed through his expressive canine tail even when the rest of his body language is calm.
- The Paralyzer: His Semblance allows him to immobilize targets that are in front of him with a single command, freezing them in place. He uses the command 'Stay' as if he's talking to a dog. He can perform this on single targets and even crowds.
- Pinocchio Nose: Marrow can try to lie, but his tail often serves as an obvious tell. His Amity Arena bio reveals this was a big issue for him in interrogation resistance training, as regardless of how good his poker face was, his tail would always give him away.
- Puppy-Dog Eyes: Marrow pulls the classic canine "begging" move on Jaune during a morning briefing, starring longingly at his coffee and wagging his tail until the other man relents and gives it to him.
- Sad Clown: Marrow's profile describes him as mischievous, but also someone that uses humor as misdirection to hide his actual feelings. While talking with Weiss and Blake in the mines, he makes a rather jaded observation about human mistreatment of the Faunus. He immediately follows this up with a flippant comment, playing things off as a joke instead of a serious discussion.
- This Is Gonna Suck: When Grimm attack the city, Marrow's response is to observe that it's going to be a long night. It's a terrible end to a terrible day where Jacques unexpectedly wins the election and Tyrian goes on a murderous rampage at Robyn's election party in a manner that frames Ironwood's people.Marrow: We've got a long night ahead.
- Token Good Teammate: Marrow is the team member who bonds the most with the heroes; he shares coffee with Jaune at mission briefings, and works different missions with all of Team RWBY. He is the only one to question their orders and hesitates to fight Team RWBY. Even when he does join the battle, he clashes with Token Evil Teammate Harriet over how much force is appropriate. She accuses him of holding back, while he berates her for trying to kill Ruby.
- Token Non-Human: Marrow is not only the only Faunus on his team, but one of only two Faunus shown working in the Atlas military or Academy.
- Tsundere: Upon first meeting the heroes after they were exonerated, Marrow politely denies any pleasure in working with them. His wagging tail gives him away, however, much to his teammates' amusement.
- You Are a Credit to Your Race: His Amity Arena bio reveals that he wasn't exempt from the prejudice Faunus faced before becoming an Ace-Op, and that said prejudice was actually a mark against him becoming one initially. However, upon factoring in how loyal he was to Atlas and Ironwood, as well as his powerful Semblance, he was made an Ace-Op in spite of his species, and is considered better than the other "riff raff".
Voiced By: Dawn M. Bennett [EN]
Debut: A New Approach*
A huge, powerfully built woman with an very enthusiastic personality. She fights with Timber, a massive war-hammer that can also become a rocket launcher. Her Semblance allows her to encase her feet in energy that locks her in place as though rooting her to the ground like a tree.
- The Ace: Her RWBY: Amity Arena bio praises Elm as a veteran operative with an exceptional track record, second only to Clover. Her numerous accomplishments and strong personality make her a pillar that supports and stabilizes the entire team. The biography goes further in praising her, suggesting that Clover's semblance is the only reason Elm isn't considered the kingdom's best operative.
- BFG: Timber can transform into a shoulder mounted rocket launcher capable of shooting two missiles at once that are powerful enough to one-shot Megoliaths.
- Boisterous Bruiser: Elm is an excitable, enthusiastic woman; she loves jumping out of airships, she loves the heroes' enthusiasm to work, and when she finds teams RWBY and JNR Huntsman jobs to undertake she slams the mission board scroll into action like it's a gambling machine and creates an exciting tale of fighting Sabyrs for them to get excited about. When in combat, Elm's a powerful warrior who fights with a large war-hammer and brings the same enthusiasm about life into her fighting style. Everything's big about Elm — including her energy.
- Color-Coded Eyes: Elm has rather plain Brown eyes in a cast with vibrant, unnatural colors. This earthy hue is suited to a woman with the ability to quite literally ground herself in place.
- Does Not Like Shoes: Her footwear consists of leg warmers that cover only the middle of her feet, leaving her toes, heels and most of the soles exposed despite harsh climate of Solitas. She uses her feet to anchor herself when in battle by sheathing her feet in energy that plants her into the ground like the roots of a tree.
- Drop the Hammer: Elm fights with Timber, a large hammer that appears to be similar in size and shape to Nora's huge war-hammer.
- Et Tu, Brute?: Elm values loyalty extremely highly and is the first to tell Team RWBY that it's enough to simply be given orders and follow them. It's not their job to question the orders they're given. When she learns that Team RWBY kept secrets from Ironwood and leaked intel to Robyn behind their backs, she is infuriated. When Team RWBY tries defending Robyn against Ironwood, she's horrified and demands to know whose side they're really on. While fighting with Team RWBY, Elm's anger is uncontrolled and violent, and she bluntly informs Vine of Team RWBY's treachery.
- Genki Girl: When first introduced, Elm makes no secret of her enthusiasm for meeting Team RWBY, gushing over them while shaking Ruby's hand so vigorously that Ruby ends up dizzy.
- The Heart: Elm is the most open and excitable amidst the Ace-Ops, and tends to be the one who handles relations between them and the protagonists. Her Amity Arena bio notes that she is considered the "pillar" of the group, second only to Clover in holding the group together.
- Logical Weakness: Elm's semblance allows her to anchor her feet to whatever surface she's standing on, allowing her to use her strength to become totally immovable. That means her Semblance is far less useful if she's standing on rubble or broken ground because she has nothing she can properly root herself to. When Team RWBY and Ace-Ops fight, Yang takes advantage of this by tearing up the ground they're fighting on with her explosive ammunition. Elm is left with nothing she can use her Semblance on, allowing Yang to gain the upper hand.
- Muscles Are Meaningful: Elm is the second-tallest of the Ace-Ops and her biceps are very developed. Her size and strength is demonstrated when she effortlessly waves Ruby's entire body around like a blanket while shaking her hand. During the Grimm assault on Mantle, she launches a Megoliath hundreds of feet into the air.
- Not So Similar: To Nora. Like Nora, she favors a Drop the Hammer weapon that doubles as an explosive ranged weapon and is a Genki Girl. Unlike Nora, Elm's Genki Girl behavior appears to be genuine and she obeys Ironwood regardless of personal feelings, compared to Nora who uses her behavior as a mask to hide her insecurities and isn't afraid to call Ironwood out on his behavior.
- Rocket-Powered Weapon: In a literal sense as well — not only does her hammer have a thruster in the back of its head to enhance her swings, it transforms into a rocket launcher.
- Sticky Situation: Whenever glowing energy encases Elm's feet, she becomes anchored to the position she's in. She can use this to avoid sliding down an icy slope and to stand her ground against an enemy onslaught.
Voiced By: Todd Womack [EN]
Debut: A New Approach*
A tall thin man with a calm personality. His weapon is Thorn, a bladed chakram he carries on his back. His Semblance allows him to encase his limbs in energy that stretch out like vines to achieve a variety of effects ranging from locking himself into place to lassoing distant opponents.
- Facial Markings: Vine has a marking in the centre of his forehead that looks like a sun half cresting the horizon, and a shaded mirror image. He has coloured circles of various sizes running down the centre of his face from forehead to chin.
- Icy Blue Eyes: Vine's eyes are an incredibly pale shade of blue, and compliment his cool and calm personality.
- Ornamental Weapon: While Vine does have a weapon, namely the chakram on his back called "Thorn", he never actually uses it, instead preferring to use his Semblance and occasionally the standard issue bolas.
- Powers Do the Fighting: Vine generally resorts to his Semblance, be it against Grimm or humans. While he does have a weapon, he is never seen holding it, let alone using it in a fight.
- Rubber Man: Vine can sheath his arms and legs in glowing energy and extend that energy like vines to achieve a range of effects. He can brace himself against walls to lock him in place, stretch them out to lasso distant opponents, or extend his legs to reach higher vantage points.
- Sarcasm-Blind: In response to the heroes' eagerness to test out their new Huntsmen licences with missions, Marrow quips that he can smell "fresh meat". Vine comments that he doesn't smell any meat, deflating Marrow's hazing.
- Skewed Priorities: When the heroes and Ace-Ops reach the hiding place of the Petra Gigas, Vine notes that discharging Dust inside it will cause the raw Dust leaking around the vicinity to wreck the launch site. Marrow then points out that it would also vaporize the heroes, and that Vine has a problem with paying more attention to the mission's objectives than he does to the safety of the team.
- The Stoic: Vine isn't one to show much emotion, his face is usually set in a placid smile or a straight line. Even when fighting Team RWBY, Vine maintains a calm tone while trying to talk them down. He briefly shows annoyed resignation at the way things go, but recomposes quickly and focuses on capturing them.
- Stronger Than They Look: Vine is the thinnest of the Ace Ops, but his Semblance can let him lift boulders heavier than him and push back multiple Grimm.
- Warrior Monk: His hair is very a close-shaven buzz cut which gives him a bald appearance without actually being bald. His clothing has eastern influence, he wears a beaded necklace and has tattoos in the center of his forehead and down his face. He evokes the image of an eastern monk and is described as being focused on self-improvement.
City of Atlas
The current capital of the Kingdom of Atlas, the city floats in the skies above Solitas, where the smoke from the Dust mines below cannot reach. A clean, modern city that's been nicknamed 'the City of Dreams', Atlas boasts state-of-the-art technology and security defences, well-resourced education and training, and comfortable lifestyles.
Atlas Cargo Pilot
Voiced by: Richard Norman [EN], Kazuki Ōta [JP]
Debut: No Safe Haven*
A Pilot who flies a cargo ship from Atlas to Mistral. He's willing to take a bribe to have Weiss escape Atlas.
- Ace Pilot: To fly through the floating islands of Lake Matsu takes skill to deal with the gravity forces from the island gravity Dust crystals that could force his ship to crash. When Lancers attack the ship, he shows he fly between very narrow spaces at speed without crashing, he can time his flight to make it through rockfalls without crashing, and he can lead Lancers to their deaths in a sheer rock face by pulling up at the very last second to avoid crashing into the island. He dies when his ship crashes.
- Killed Offscreen: As a result of the battle with the Lancers, the airship he's piloting crash lands. While Weiss comes out badly hurt but surviving, the pilot is nowhere to be found. The creators confirmed that the pilot died in the crash.
- Running the Blockade: He's smuggling Dust (and Weiss) out of Atlas immediately after Ironwood banned the export of Dust and closed the borders.
Voiced by: Luci Christian [EN]
Debut: Sparks *
An elderly woman who, despite being on her deathbed, is being held in a maximum security Atlesian facility.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: As a Maiden, her powers pass to whoever she is thinking of when she dies. She chooses Penny as her successor because the gynoid girl did her best to comfort Fria in her final moments.
- Bequeathed Power: Her very nature as a Maiden means that her powers will go to another upon death. Ultimately, she chooses to pass on her abilities to Penny when the young girl comforts her in her final moments.
- An Ice Person: As the Winter Maiden, she has extremely powerful ice abilities. The cold she creates is so powerful that Winter's gloves partially disintegrate just from getting too close to her, and even Cinder, who is a powerful fire-using Maiden is driven back; Cinder's Grimm arm is designed for absorbing Maiden powers, but can't handle the force of power coming from Fria and begins to freeze.
- The Last Dance: Fria is on her death bed when Cinder comes to steal the Winter Maiden's power from her. Even with her memories fading, Fria still remembers her duty and fends Cinder off with a final display of the Winter Maiden's full power, creating a vortex of ice and freezing cold so enormous that it blasts through the roof of the building she's in. The blizzard is only stopped when Penny is able to break through, and comfort Fria in her final moments.
- Life Will Kill You: Rather than falling in battle against Grimm or someone after her powers, Fria is slowly dying of the effects of old age, which creates gaps in her memory and leaves her bedridden.
- MacGuffin Super Person: Fria is the Winter Maiden, a woman who possesses unimaginable elemental magical power. However, she is an elderly woman confined to a hospital bed, visited only by those to whom General Ironwood grants access. She is introduced to the show already on her deathbed with only days left to live. General Ironwood permits only Winter Schnee to visit her in the hope of making sure Winter is the last person in Fria's thoughts when she dies; by doing that, he hopes to ensure the Maiden powers transfer to Winter when Fria dies.
- Meaningful Name: "Fria" is homophonous to Frio, the Spanish word for "cold". As the Winter Maiden, she commands powerful elemental ice magic. It is so cold that it starts disintegrating the gloves on Winter's hands and even begins to freeze Cinder's Grimm arm, which was designed to absorb the power of Maidens.
- Never Mess with Granny: Despite her old age and being confined to a bed Fria is still tremendously powerful due to her being the Winter Maiden and having fully mastered her powers as noted by Winter. Cinder finds this out the hard way during her attempt to get the Winter Maiden's power when Fria creates a blizzard strong enough to easily repel her. The cold she produces after is such that Cinder (herself a Maiden) and Winter are unable to break through it and that it takes Penny's robotic nature for her to be capable of reaching Fria.
- Technicolor Fire: When Fria taps into her Maiden powers, the fire that forms around her eyes takes on the same colour as her Aura, which is a very pale, icy blue.
Voiced by: Alejandro Saab
Debut: Tipping Point *
A young man who is at the Schnee benefit gala for Vale. He offends Weiss when he tries to talk to her.
- Idle Rich: While attending a charity for Vale after the fall of Beacon, Henry readily admits that he doesn't know or care what the event is about. He's just there because he likes to go to parties.
- Upper-Class Twit: Henry is oblivious to what goes on in the outside world, and equally clueless about reading the room. When she finally threatens to have security throw him out, his departure consists of him acting like her anger came out of nowhere, making it clear that he completely failed to notice her visibly growing upset with the things he was saying.
Debut: RWBY Before The Dawn *
The father of CFVY member Velvet Scarlatina. He is a brilliant scientist originally from Vale, recruited by General Ironwood to work on military projects.
- First-Name Basis: He addresses Ironwood by his first name, since they are friends. It catches Velvet by surprise when he first does it in front of her. He used this close connection to help his daughter gain access to the rare Hard-Light Dust she uses for her weapon.
- Gadgeteer Genius: His skills as an engineer caught the attention of General Ironwood, who recruited him to work for Atlas on top secret projects. Velvet's childhood was spent building things with her father, developing the skills she would use to build her camera Anesidora.
- Insistent Terminology: He prefers to be called a "tinkerer", as opposed to an engineer.
- Parents as People: Will is a playful, brilliant scientist who loves his family. However, he is also so committed to his work that it placed considerable strain on his family. He is aware of how it hurt Velvet, and how it also ruined his marriage.
- When You Coming Home, Dad?: He moved to Atlas for his work, leaving his wife and Velvet behind in Vale. His research and status as a highly-valued asset for the Atlas military meant he had very little time to spend with them. The summer before Velvet started at Beacon, she asked directly about him coming home. He admitted he was probably going to be staying in Atlas.
The Schnee Family
One of the most powerful families on Remnant, the Schnee family runs the largest Dust company on the planet, controlling everything from mining to munition-making. Despite their impeccable public image, the Schnee family has quite a murky history.
Voiced By: Jason Douglas [EN], Madoka Shiga [JP]
Debut: End of the Beginning*
Jacques is in charge of running the Schnee Dust Company (SDC), one of the largest producers of Dust on Remnant and the father of Winter, Weiss, and Whitley Schnee. His original name was Jacques Gelé (French for Jack Frost), but he took the Schnee name when he married into the Schnee family and was given control of the company by his father-in-law.
- Abusive Parent: From the start of the series, Weiss heavily implies that Jacques was abusive towards her and possibly her sister while they were growing up. He received a lot of stress from dealing with the White Fang's terrorist acts against the Schnee Dust Company, so he often would come home from work in a less than pleasant mood. Once Jacques finally appears in Volume 4, he's revealed to be a merciless sociopath who only cares about the family name — which he, in fact, married into and took for himself — and has no qualms about disinheriting Weiss for disobeying him one too many times. Volume 7 implies that he's abusive to Whitley too, as he lectures him for disturbing him when he wanted to be alone, and again when he doesn't close the door immediately after he tells him too.
- Archnemesis Dad: During his encounters with Weiss in Volume 4, she is focused on gaining and/or maintaining her freedom from him, and he's focused on manipulating and abusing her emotionally and physically. In the episode "Punished", Jacques eventually disinherits and detains her for disobeying him one too many times, forcing her to flee Atlas in an attempt to reunite with Winter.
- Bad Boss: Jacques maximizes profit at the expense of his workers' rights and salaries. When running for the council seat, he holds their "non-essential" jobs hostage to force them to vote for him, openly admitting that he'd lay them all off to save money if he didn't need their votes.
- Control Freak: Jacques expects his children to follow his orders without question and to further the business interests of the Schnee Dust Company, regardless of their personal desires. Once Weiss tells him about her plans to leave Atlas, Jacques detains her until they reach an "agreement" about how her future will unfold. When Weiss realizes that Whitley has been waiting for Jacques to disinherit both daughters so that he will inherit everything, the former reasons that the only way to handle Jacques is to follow the latter's expectations.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: The Schnee Dust Company was founded by Nicholas Schnee, the son of a Dust miner, who was determined to save the Kingdom of Mantle from its economic decline. By training as a Huntsman, Nick was able to lead expeditions in search of Dust and personally protect the people who worked for him. When he handed the company to his son-in-law, Jacques, the company had a reputation for both quality and trust. Jacques, however, is motivated only by profit, maximizing turnover at the expense of workers' rights and salaries. He will engage in philanthropic activities, such as charity fund-raising to help Vale, but only as a PR exercise to protect his company's investments and profits. In a bid to win Mantle's council seat, he closes all non-essential SDC facilities and promises them to restore their jobs and stop the embargo should he be elected into the Council.Qrow: Cheap labor, dangerous working conditions, doing whatever it takes to destroy the competition... Jacques Schnee doesn't care about people. He cares about winning.
- Corrupt Politician: He's upgraded to this as of Volume 7, pursuing a seat on Mantle's council for the sake of getting around Ironwood's Dust embargo and boosting his company's profits. Jacques really seals himself as this when he makes a deal with Watts to rig the election in his favor.
- Dark Horse Victory: No-one expects Jacques to win the election and the polls initially reflect this, so he's referred to as the dark horse. Once he wins it, the news reporters refer to it as a dark horse victory.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: Jacques presents himself as a calm, controlled individual whose conniving personality never wavers and who can always turn a potential upset into something he can take advantage of. However, when he does struggle to see a solution to a situation he's in, he becomes prone to causing himself even more problems. When the council finds out he collaborated with Watts to rig the election in exchange for his log-in credentials, which were upgraded to the highest level upon winning the election, Jacques' situation falls apart. He tries defending himself by insisting he "only" intended to win the election and had nothing to do with the massacre of Robyn's supporters, Penny being framed for it, or the shut-down of Mantle's heating grid. The more he talks, the more he angers people: firstly, Councilman Sleet insist he stays to face the consequences; Weiss then uses her new Huntress licence to arrest him; Robyn throws a chair across a room at his flippant disregard rigging the election; Winter lectures him about getting Mantle's heating grid up and running; finally, even the stoic Ironwood loses his temper with him.
- Dirty Coward: Although Jacques is perfectly composed and arrogant as long as he's in control of a situation, his cowardice becomes readily apparent when things don't work in his favour. When outed for collaborating with Watts to rig the election in his favor, he's reduced to a stammering, fidgeting wreck who can only manage feeble lies in his defense. When that fails, he tries to flee.
- Foil: Jacques and Nicholas, Discussed Trope. Jacques is a man who assumed control of the Schnee Dust Company at the height of its fame solely by marrying into the family. He uses shady business practices to maximize profit, drives rival Dust companies out of business, exploits company workers, and keeps the people of Mantle in poverty by driving down wages. Burying his unsavory business practices with aggressive PR, he forces his family to remain with him even at the cost of their own happiness. In contrast, his father-in-law Nicholas was the son of a miner who trained in combat and learned everything he could to better himself. He was motivated by the determination to lift the people of Mantle out of poverty and personally led any risk-taking expeditions in search of lucrative Dust mines, risking himself to protect his men. He built his company from scratch to become a global brand respected for its quality and trustworthiness; giving up adventuring to spend more time with his family, he was a man who was respected for his ethics and whose family loved having him with them.
- Gold Digger: Jacques is the son-in-law of the company's founder, Nicholas. He married into the family and took the Schnee name so that he could take control of the company once Nicholas became too ill to continue leading it. Jacques is a cunning businessman who is motivated solely by the size of the profit he can generate. He has taken the company from strength to strength by focusing on profit at the expense of workers' rights and wages, and at the cost of the company's original philanthropic soul.
- Greed: Jacques married into the Schnee family to take control of the company. His primary motivation is profit-making, and his sole concern with Ironwood's Dust embargo is that it's cutting into his profits. He calculates how many Mantle employees he can lay off based entirely on the personal benefits to himself and pursues a seat on the kingdom's council just to obtain the power to end the Dust embargo that's crippling his profits.
- Hate Sink: Jacques is Weiss's abusive, controlling, greedy and sociopathic father who treats his own family and associates like trash. Prior to the events of the show, Jacques married into the Schnee name for profit — a fact that drove his wife Willow to alcoholism when she found out — and essentially transformed the Schnee Dust Company into a sweatshop that uses Faunus as cheap labour. In Volume 4, Jacques disinherits Weiss for disobeying him one too many times, forcing her to escape. When Weiss and the heroes return to Atlas in Volume 7, Jacques tries to guilt-trip her by bringing up Willow, is later shown verbally abusing his son Whitley, and agrees to a deal with Arthur Watts to rig the election for Atlas Council membership in his favour. When Weiss exposes his partnership with Watts to the rest of the Council, Jacques is reduced to a stammering wreck.
- Implausible Deniability: Jacques tends to have an answer for everything when he's in control of a conversation. However, when faced with the unexpected, he doesn't lie well. When Weiss reveals the video footage that proves he worked with Watts to rig the election, Jacques stammers for a response before feebly declaring "That... isn't real." This fools precisely no-one, especially the councilors and Ironwood.
- It's All About Me: When it comes down to it, despite doing such things as charity events and fundraisers, Jacques is only concerned with maximizing profits and his own image, and doesn't think much about anyone who's not him unless he can use them to his own benefit.
- Lack of Empathy: As Qrow himself states, all Jacques cares about is winning and is willing to use others to further his goals. He only hosts a fundraiser for Vale in order to attain good publicity for the company, and bluntly points out to Weiss that her dreams and ambitions do not mean anything to him.
- Laser-Guided Karma: By the time of Volume 7, his Lack of Empathy towards his workers and abusive behavior towards his wife and children eventually come back to haunt him. Willow tells Weiss that she once decided to set up cameras in every room in the manor just in case she ever needed evidence to protect the safety of her children. That act accidentally captures the meeting between Jacques and Watts that uncovers Watts's scheme, Jacques's involvement and the fact the election result was rigged. Thus, Weiss arrests Jacques for committing treason.
- Meaningful Name: His maiden name, Jacques Gelé is French for "Jack Frost". In stories, Jack Frost was a creature who was always a threat to Christmas, making him an opponent of Father Christmas. The founder of the Schnee Dust Company, Nicholas Schnee, is based on Saint Nicholas, a wealthy man who used his wealth to better the lives of others and is believed to be the origin of the Santa Claus folklore. Nicholas passed on a thriving and philanthropic company to his son-in-law, Jacques, not realising that Jacques would destroy everything that had ever mattered to him. Jacques has turned the company into a profiteering business that climbs on the backs of the poor and which keeps people in poverty instead of helping them escape it.
- Odd Name Out: Of the Schnees who appear onscreen, he is the only one whose first name doesn't begin with the letter "W". It's a clue that he isn't a Schnee by birth and only married Willow, the SDC heiress, so that he could take the prestigious name and company for his own.
- Parental Favoritism: Weiss starts the show as the SDC heiress because Jacques had disinherited his oldest daughter Winter for pursuing a military career that doesn't meet with his approval. In Jacques's study, the only family portrait present on his desk is that of his son, Whitley. While there is a photograph of Weiss facing the desk, it's located in a much less prominent position on a book shelf. After Weiss disobeys Jacques one too many times, Jacques is forced to disinherit her and make Whitley his sole heir. After Weiss flees Atlas to rejoin her team-mates, he turns her photograph around to face the wall.
- Photo Op with the Dog: Since Atlas has halted Dust exportation with the world in a state of high political tension, Jacques organizes a charity concert to convince the public that the Schnee Dust Company is still on their side, and has Weiss to perform during the event to remind everyone that a Schnee was on the front lines during the Beacon assault.
- Pragmatic Villainy: He freely admits that the only reason he hasn't laid off his Mantle workers to save money is because he needs their votes for the upcoming election. When Watts strikes up a deal with him to stuff the ballots in exchange for his log-in credentials, Jacques happily agrees.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: His typical outfit is a sharp-looking blue dress shirt, navy vest, and white tie and dress coat (although the tie is actually a clip-on).
- Slave to PR: By the nature of his business. While unethical to an extreme, Jacques gets off scot-free by having "the best damn PR team in the world" according to Qrow, and uses charity events and aggressive PR to cover up his abuses and monopolizing.
- Smug Snake: When Jacques feels in control of a situation, he is calm, pompous and manipulative. In Volume 4, he cajoles an unwilling Weiss into singing at a charity event for Vale, praising her only when she gives in to his demands. Later, he disinherits Weiss for her insolence while treating her like an ungrateful child. During a meeting with the council in Volume 7, he smugly flatters Robyn for her passion and uses Winter's own words against her to convince the council to end Ironwood's embargo that's eating into his business profits. When he is eventually exposed for treason, ballot stuffing and accessory to murder, his smug arrogance vanishes to be replaced by a stammering, panicking coward who attempts to run away.
- The Sociopath: He puts his needs and desires above everyone else's, cares about no one but himself, and is superficially charming enough to have convinced Nicholas Schnee to let him take control of the Schnee Dust Company and maintain a good public image in spite of his abusive business practices. This all points to him being a high-functioning sociopath. In Volume 7, he takes Watts's advice during the council election to shut down all non-essential SDC operations, and promises the workers to restore their jobs should they vote him into the council. It incites riots across Mantle, but the reason why Jacques wants the council seat in the first place is so that he can address Ironwood's decisions, which are affecting his company's profit margins.
- The Unfettered: Jacques is willing to do whatever it takes for the sake of profit and/or power. This includes underpaying his workforce, throwing his workers into dangerous working conditions, ruthlessly destroying competitors, holding his laborers' jobs hostage to force them to vote for him, and handing Dr. Watts a backdoor to Atlas' security grid so he will rig the council election and make Ironwood look bad.Ironwood: I knew you'd stoop low to get what you wanted, Jacques. But this?
- Unwitting Pawn: Jacques's greed makes him a perfect dupe for Watts; When Watts offers to help rig the election so he can lay off his Mantle workers to cut costs, he happily agrees to give the doctor his log-in credentials to do so. However, Jacques's actions plays right into the villains' hands. Not only do the lay-offs and Jacques's victory increase tensions, draw more Grimm to the city, and gives Jacques the foothold to interfere with Ironwood, his upgraded access allows Watts to not only hack into more of Atlas' systems but also begin to lock the rest of the council out. The capper is Watts turning off the heating grid under the SDC's supervision, causing riots and a full-on Grimm invasion.
- Villain in a White Suit: Jacques adopts a formal white dress suit accented with a blue shirt, pale blue tie and red handkerchief. He is also a Corrupt Corporate Executive who lacks empathy and compassion in dealing with his workers, and primarily cares about profit. At one point, there is a contrasting shot of dirty and poor miners deep in the mines staring at a broadcast of him wearing his expensive, crisp and clean white suit while he claims they're in it together.
- Villainous Breakdown: Jacques is smug and arrogant when he's in control of a situation, but freaks out whenever things go marginally pear-shaped. During a meeting at Schnee Manor in Volume 7, he receives some bad news; while everyone in the room focuses on Ironwood, he sits in the background visibly sweating and rubbing his forehead with his hand in worry. He's initially warned the heating grid has been switched off for Mantle but doesn't alert the council because his login credentials were used; when Weiss exposes him for election rigging and treason, Ironwood and the councillors link him as an accessory to murder as well. Once Jacques realizes this, his inherent cowardice comes out and he tries to run away.
- Would Hit a Girl: Being an Abusive Parent, he had no reservations about hitting his own daughter when she brings up the fact that he married into the family.
Voiced By: Caitlin Glass [EN]
Debut: Cordially Invited*
Jacques's wife and the mother of his three children, and daughter of SDC founder Nicholas Schnee.
- Alcoholic Parent: A Played for Drama example. When Weiss talks to Yang about the former's family life in Volume 5, she reveals that Jacques's lack of interest in her 10th birthday party led to him confirming to Willow that he only married her so he can obtain the prestigious Schnee name and company. Her subsequent breakdown led to her, as Weiss puts it, progressing from glasses to bottles of wine and no longer taking any active part in her children's lives. When she drinks straight from a bottle in front of Weiss during their meeting in "Cordially Invited", the latter is noticeably upset, but says nothing.
- Cut a Slice, Take the Rest: When she first appears onscreen, she is holding a full tumbler and a half-empty bottle of vodka. While she talks with Weiss, she toys with the glass but never drinks from it; she swigs directly from the bottle instead.
- Despair Event Horizon: According to Weiss, when Jacques told Willow that he only married her to obtain the Schnee name, she fell into despair and resorted to drinking alcohol. As her drinking increased, her presence at family gatherings or Weiss's recitals became increasingly scarce to the point where she was no longer involved in their children's lives.
- Functional Addict: She downs half a bottle of vodka while taking with Weiss yet remains completely coherent throughout. In general, she seems more depressed and exhausted than inebriated. She also still retained enough awareness of her family's situation to secretly install cameras to monitor Jacques's activities for her and her children's safety.
- Meal Ticket: Jacques Gelé married Willow for her money, using her to inherit the Schnee Dust Company that her father had built. The heartbreak of learning that she'd married a Gold Digger turned Willow into an alcoholic, unable to protect her children from their abusive father.
- Motherly Side Plait: Willow ties her long hair back in a loose, messy ponytail, in comparison to the more elaborate styles worn by her daughters. It makes her look less "put together", and contrasts against Jacques' obsession with their family keeping up appearances.
- Parents as People: Willow loves her children unconditionally, and she does worry about the impact that she and Jacques have had on all three of their children, yet she's too trapped in her own helplessness to strike out against Jacques directly. She has been secretly recording Jacques's activities in the Schnee Manor for some time just in case she ever needs to get herself and her family to safety. She also tells Weiss to take Whitley with her when she next leaves, pointing out that Weiss left him all alone with two terrible parents, which led to their strained relationship.
- Properly Paranoid: She put cameras in every room of the mansion without her husband's knowledge in case he did something that she'd want a recording of (she implies she's worried about Domestic Abuse). She gets a recording of him talking with Watts.
- Strong Family Resemblance: All of her children clearly take after her as they all share the same hair and iris color. Her daughters in particular look like younger versions of her with more rounded facial structures and different heights.
- Useless Bystander Parent: Zigzagged. While Willow does love her children, her despair at discovering Jacques was a Gold Digger led her to become an alcoholic and barely present in her children's lives, too trapped in her own helplessness to stop Jacques from abusing them. However, she has also been secretly recording Jacques' activities in the manor for her and her children's safety, and acknowledges the role she played in creating the abusive environment they live in when she points out to Weiss that she left Whitley alone with them.
Voiced By: Howard Wang [EN], Marina Inoue [JP]
Weiss and Winter's little brother and the current heir presumptive of the SDC.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: When Weiss meets Whitley after returning to Atlas, the latter acts like a decent brother towards her. She's suspicious of this because she knows that Whitley dislikes both of his sisters, but Whitley blows it off as a sign he's growing up. But as it turns out, Whitley's encouragement and support for Weiss is an act. By behaving as a perfect, obedient son, Jacques views Whitley as the only option for the legacy of the SDC when his daughters disobey him. He disinherits both Winter and Weiss and makes Whitley his sole heir, exactly as Whitley planned.
- False Reassurance: From the moment Weiss returns Atlas, Whitley is supportive of her and understanding about her situation. Weiss is confused by this because she was always under the impression that Whitley didn't really like her or Winter, but Whitley assures her it was only Winter he had issues with. However, it is only after Jacques has disinherited her and makes Whitley the sole heir that Weiss realises that Whitley's actions were only a pretense so that he would be seen by Jacques as the only suitable heir. Whitley reveals that the only way to deal with Jacques is to follow his expectations.
- Family Theme Naming: The three Schnee children and their mother all have names beginning with the letter 'W' and which evoke the color white. Whitley's name comes from Anglo-Saxon roots, where 'whit' means 'white' and a ley is a clearing in a forest or wood. 'Whitley' therefore means 'white glade'.
- Fish Eyes: When Weiss accuses Whitley of being manipulative, he gets in her face. As he does so, his eyes seem to swell in size and his eyes slide slightly off-centre, creating a wall-eyed look that emphasises in a creepy way just how resolved and angry he is in return. Weiss has just realised that Whitley has manipulated appearances to make Jacques think ill of his daughters, disinheriting them, ensuring he will be the sole heir to the company. The eerie focus on his eyes occurs as he makes her aware that they must follow Jacques's expectations, making him look both angry and slightly unhinged.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: It's very hard to catch, as it happens for only a second, but for a brief moment when Jacques opens the door, Whitley looks saddened as if he overheard the conversation between Weiss and their father after the party, implying that, in spite of his attitude once Weiss confronts him, he does actually love her to some extent.
- Freudian Excuse: Ever since his first appearance, Whitley has been antagonistic towards Weiss under a thin veneer of being a supportive sibling catching up with and checking on his sister, but otherwise wants nothing to do with her. When Weiss confronts Whitley in Volume 4 about his false affection for her, Whitley reasons that they must follow Jacques's expectations. When Weiss tells her mother about the situation with Whitley in Volume 7, Willow effectively confirms what Whitley said by telling her that's because Weiss's departure left Whitley alone with an abusive father and a negligent mother.
- Like Father, Like Son: Whitley's friendly and supportive behaviour towards Weiss leaves her feeling suspicious as it's unlike his usual behaviour. She also doesn't understand why he's speaking respectfully about Winter when he doesn't like her. It's revealed to be a set-up when Weiss finds out Whitley was fabricating support of his sisters to ensure Jacques viewed him as the only viable heir to the SDC. Just as Jacques is implied to have manipulated Nicholas Schnee and the daughter he married to become the sole heir of the SDC, Whitley has done the same against his own siblings. In Volume 7, Dr. Watts even lampshades how much Whitley is like Jacques:Watts: A spitting image of you, this lad, Jacques. Creepily so, I might add. Hes definitely inherited your... affect.
- Non-Action Guy: Unlike both of his sisters, Whitley has demonstrated no combat prowess whatsoever. After Weiss accuses him of being jealous of his sisters' abilities, he states that he considers combat training to be beneath those with power. The real power, according to him, is in armies like the one Atlas has, and that a single Huntsman, no matter how powerful, is still nothing compared to an army.
- Parental Favoritism: During Jacques's conversations with Ironwood and Weiss in Volume 4, a very brief scene of the desk reveals that the only portrait Jacques keeps on his desk is of Whitley; there's no sign he has any daughters or even a wife. After Weiss inadvertently summons a Boarbatusk that seriously injures a guest at the charity fundraiser, Jacques is forced to disinherit Weiss and make Whitley the sole heir to the company.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: Although Whitley appears to be drifting around the house, he's in a suit: smart trousers, shirt, tie and waistcoat. He's not wearing a suit jacket, however.
- Smug Snake: He is as such in the Volume 4 episode "Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back," when he interrupts Weiss in the middle of her training to ask her if she wants him to pick anything up for her while he's in town meeting business associates. He's not interested in whether she does have any errands for him, he just wants her to know he's out and about on SDC business while she's detained and disinherited.
- Sour Outside, Sad Inside: Yes, he acts like a brat, is antagonistic towards Weiss, and manipulated events to ensure Jacques saw him as the sole heir since he behaves like the perfect son. But Whitley is, in fact, just as much a victim of their father's abuse as Weiss and Winter are. When Weiss points out her strained relationship, Willow points out that it was because she left him alone with two terrible parents. To drive the point home, when Jacques is arrested and taken away by the Atlas police, Whitley is shown sitting by himself on the stairs looking forlorn and confused, a reminder that Whitley is simply just a scared, lonely boy desperate for someone to genuinely love him.
Voiced By: J. Michael Tatum [EN], Ken Uo [JP]
Debut: The Next Step*
Klein works in the Schnee household as a butler and has the ability to switch between a number of different personas with different eye colors.
- Affectionate Nickname: His yellow-eyed personality is a fatherly, compassionate one. When that personality comes to the fore, he calls Weiss his "happy little snowflake".
- The Confidant: All of his personalities are be absolutely dedicated to helping Weiss through her troubles.
- Eye Color Change: His personality changes are signified by his eyes changing colour. Each eye colour reveals which personality is in control, and each personality is a reference to one of the Seven Dwarfs from the Disney version of the tale.
- Brown: His default personality is solemn, well-mannered and business-like. The Dwarf this references is Doc.
- Red: When his eyes turn red, he takes on the role of a cartoon villain, hunching slightly, with a sly attitude, crude humour and making mean comments. The Dwarf this references is Grumpy.
- Blue: When his eyes turn blue, he sneezes often and becomes humorously nervous and apologetic. The Dwarf this references is Sneezy.
- Yellow: He becomes upbeat and sympathetic when his eyes turn yellow. The Dwarf this references is Happy.
- Meaningful Name: Klein Sieben's name means "Little Seven" in German and the different personalities that have so far been seen correspond to the personalities of Disney's Seven Dwarfs. Weiss is based off Snow White, and Klein goes out of his way to try and keep her cheerful and happy in a home environment that is isolated, depressed and stifling. When Weiss gets detained in her own home, it is Klein who helps her to escape through the manor's secret exit; this is what the Seven Dwarfs do for Snow White when she gets detained.
- Parental Substitute: Weiss's mother is a neglectful alcoholic and her father is a self-absorbed businessman who is only concerned with maximizing profits and his own image. Klein, on the other hand, is a friendly butler who uses his ability to shift personalities to cheer up Weiss when she's feeling low. He provides her with coffee after she's been in a cold room, uses his rude and grumpy personality to make her laugh by mocking Jacques's behaviour, and has a motherly personality that fusses over her well-being. Once Jacques detains Weiss for her insolence in Volume 4, Klein doesn't hesitate to secretly help her escape the family mansion and flee Atlas. Thus, Weiss considers Winter and Klein as the only family she has left.
- Split Personality: He displays several different personalities with their own respective eye colors. Each personality comes with its own voice change and body language. His default personality is that of a well-mannered, solemn butler, but he can morph into a grouch that makes mildly rude comments and a sneezy, nervous klutz-type character when aiming for comedy. He also has a very motherly personality that comes out when his eyes turn yellow. An RTX panel confirmed he is a rare, positive non-villain portrayal of dissociative identity disorder.
- Waistcoat of Style: Klein's uniform consists of smart charcoal trousers, waistcoat, white shirt and blue tie. The waistcoat is the same charcoal as the trousers and has piping that is the same shade blue as the tie. The top quarter of the waistcoat (the shoulder section) has a very delicate, repeating pattern woven into the material. There are four pairs of silver buttons, which match the silver buckle on his belt and a pocket watch is carried in the right pocket, attached to one of the buttons by a silver chain.
For more information on Nicholas Schnee, please see the RWBY: World of Remnant page.
The Atlas Council
The Atlesian council is the governing body of the Kingdom of Atlas and oversees both the cities of Atlas and Mantle. Its members are democratically elected by the kingdom's citizens and therefore can be natives of either Atlas or Mantle.
The Council consists of five seats made up of three citizens, the general of the Atlesian military and the headmaster of Atlas Academy. Since becoming the headmaster of Atlas Academy, General Ironwood has held two seats on the council.
- Locked Out of the Loop: Ironwood refuses to tell them about Salem and the Amity Colosseum project out of fear that word will get back to Salem and she will sabotage it, alongside the fact that they may not take the news about Salem well. This causes major tension with both the council and the public at large, as without context for his actions he comes off as a paranoid tyrant. He finally comes clean in "As Above, So Below".
Voiced by: Chad James [EN]
Debut: Cordially Invited*
An elderly male member of the Atlas Council.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: During the council meeting at Schnee Manor in the Volume 7 episode "As Above, So Below", the council discover that Watts and Jacques made a deal that involved rigging the election, which is connected to the massacre that occurred at Robyn's rally and the shutting down on Mantle's heating grid, Jacques tries to claim the video footage is fake. But an outraged Sleet tells him to "Take. Your. Seat."
- This Cannot Be!: When Sleet learns that Watts is active in Mantle, he is so shocked that he sinks back down into his chair. He seems particularly shaken by the fact that Watts is still alive after having been considered dead for several years.
- Unwitting Pawn: He is completely right to denounce Ironwood abusing his power and keeping secrets from the Council, and under normal circumstances he'd be perfectly justified in removing him from his seat. It's just that he's Locked Out of the Loop about Ironwood's true intentions and him helping get Ironwood off the council is playing right into Salem's hands. This ends when Jacques is exposed and he's brought into the loop.
Voiced by: Anairis Quinones [EN]
Debut: Cordially Invited*
A short female member of the Atlas Council.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: She notes that there's no evidence that any kingdom is planning to attack Atlas, and Ironwood's embargo is hurting their relations with the other nations. When Sleet questions whether Ironwood's information could possibly be true, she states that she believes it, reasoning that no one would tell such an outlandish lie.
City of Mantle
The original capital of the former Kingdom of Mantle, the rise of Atlas reduced Mantle to a shadow of its former self. Streets are run-down, technology is old, security defences haven't been updated in years, and smog from the mines hangs heavy over the city. People struggle to eke out an existence, depending on dangerous mines for work and experiencing regular Grimm attacks that the city increasingly struggles to repel. Meanwhile, Atlas hangs in the sky above their heads; a constant reminder of the wealthy elite that is failing to share the wealth that Mantle creates, and a target of Mantle's growing resentment and anger at having been left so far behind.
Voiced by: Cristina Valenzuela [EN]
Debut: Sparks *
A Mantle native who trained at Atlas Academy. Rejecting the option of joining the elite military Huntsmen after she graduated, she returned to Mantle to pursue a career as a politician who fights for Mantle's rights. Robyn fights with a wrist-mounted crossbow with sharp edges. Her Semblance allows her to tell if someone is lying when she makes contact with their hand.
- Action Politician: Robyn is a Huntress turned politician, campaigning for the open seat on the kingdom's Council. While the other Happy Huntresses provide security during her political events, Robyn is still their leader and a capable fighter in her own right. When her election-night rally is attacked, she responds with weapon drawn and is prepared to join the fight if necessary. And when Mantle is ordered evacuated, she reassures the citizens in a broadcast that she will personally assist in the evacuation process. This is actually a trick to lure Tyrian into the open, using Robyn as the bait. Alongside Clover and Qrow, Robyn defeats and captures the assassin when he comes to kill her.
- Animal Motifs: Her personal symbol is of a bird with flared wings. All her followers have adopted her symbol and her crossbow extends wings on either side whenever she prepares to use it.
- Automatic Crossbows: Robyn's weapon is a wrist-mounted crossbow that looks like a bird spreading its wings in flight while in use. She can fire crossbow bolts in succession without visibly loading them, and if she wants to get up close and personal, the wings expand into a bladed circular shield. She also carries a few explosive bolts, as Tyrian finds out the hard way.
- Beauty Mark: She has two noticeable moles on her face and has been explicitly described by Forest as 'lovely'.
- Fatal Flaw: Her Hot-Blooded nature. Robyn genuinely cares for Mantle's well-being, but she has a terrible tendency to leap, then look. She rarely considers consequences and is prone to acting purely on impulse without thinking things through. This comes back to bite her in "With Friends Like These" when she threatens to fight Clover; allowing herself to be baited by Tyrian ensures the fight cannot be avoided. The consequences of them starting a fight in the confined space of a ship means Tyrian is able to escape, crash the ship and in the ensuing battle that follows, he is able to kill Clover and frame Qrow for the murder.
- Fingerless Gloves: Robyn wears black gloves that cover her entire hands except for the first finger on each hand, which is fully exposed.
- Fury-Fueled Foolishness: Robyn is a passionate woman who cares for her city, but her temper leads her to making rash decisions. When Ironwood decides to abandon Mantle and orders Teams RWBY, JNPR and Qrow arrested, he even sends the arrest order to Robyn. Angry with the idea that Ironwood's underestimating her yet again, Robyn immediately attacks Clover, even though they're currently on an airship in flight transporting Tyrian. This contributes toa cascade of disasters that result in the ship crashing, her being knocked out and Tyrian escaping after framing Qrow for the murder of Clover.
- Hero Antagonist: Robyn is trying to become a member of the Atlesian council because she's trying to fight for Mantle's rights. This puts her at odds with General Ironwood who is currently making decisions based on the Secret War with Salem that Robyn knows nothing about. When Ironwood diverts construction material away from Mantle's crumbling perimeter walls, Robyn blockades the transport. She confronts Clover, Ruby and Qrow over the fact it appears to make no sense to divert construction supplies to an isolated, abandoned mine when Mantle's need for them is desperate and urgent. While Clover defends the decision, he doesn't seem to enjoy opposing her and genuinely wishes her luck in her attempt to be elected to the council.
- A Hero to His Hometown: Robyn is extremely popular in Mantle because she's willing to fight Atlas to improve Mantle's living and working conditions. As a native of Mantle, the locals refer to her as their 'hometown hero'.
- Hot-Blooded: Robyn isn't exactly someone who thinks before she leaps. One of her biggest flaws is her impulsiveness and short-sightedness, which frequently leads to her being made an Unwitting Pawn by Watts and Tyrian in their plans to destabilize Mantle, alongside Ironwood barely taking her seriously until she begins robbing his transports. When Robyn hears of Ironwood's plan to abandon Mantle, her immediate response is to start a fight with Clover in the enclosed environment of the airship, even agreeing with Tyrian (the Serial Killer who tried to kill her not even an hour prior) when he bemoans that the fighting hasn't begun yet. Her giving in to her temper allows Tyrian to escape, Clover to die, and ends with her and Qrow being arrested and sent to jail at the end of the season.
- It's Personal: The murder of her supporters and other citizens across Mantle in Volume 7 made her determined to find the culprit and gain revenge. After luring Tyrian into a trap with Qrow and Clover, Robyn comments that she wanted to take him on by herself but Ironwood made the other two join.
- Living Lie Detector: Robyn's Semblance allows her to take a person's hand and encase both clasping hands in her Aura. When so joined, she can tell if her target is lying whenever she asks them a question. When a person tells the truth, her Aura turns green.
- Locked Out of the Loop: Robyn knows Ironwood is doing something secretive with Amity Colosseum, but she doesn't know the details because Ironwood doesn't trust her. She correspondingly doesn't trust him, especially given the negative impact his decisions are having on Mantle. Although Blake and Yang tell her that he's planning on building a communications tower and reveal that there's a third party in Mantle actively working to turn Atlas and Mantle against each other by framing Ironwood for murders occurring in the city, they don't tell Robyn anything about who that third party is or what they're after. Robyn is angry to be left dangling and warns them that she's not going to stop until she knows the full truth. She's finally brought into the loop when Ironwood comes clean to her and the Atlas Council in "As Above, So Below".
- The Nicknamer: Although she doesn't use nicknames with her huntress team and Clover, she has a habit of automatically assigning insulting nicknames to people she's just met and then continuing to use them during subsequent encounters. Ruby is 'pipsqueak', Qrow is 'five o'clock shadow', Marrow is 'Wags' and Yang is 'Fisticuffs'.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Discussed and defied. She states that she really wanted to pummel Tyrian on her own, but General Ironwood ordered her to share him with Qrow and Clover (Qrow especially has a far more personal grudge against Tyrian after the events of Volume 4).
- Vague Age: When Yang reads Robyn's bio, the information reveals that her age is listed as "Late 20s - Early 30s". This is despite her having been educated at Atlas Academy, which should mean her exact age is well-known.
- Vigilante Woman: Robyn was previously willing to push the limits of what she could do legally to oppose Ironwood's reassignment of Mantle construction materials, such as barricading the road to stop lorries. However, she backs down after arguing with Clover and later claims to Marrow that she's never done anything illegal. During the election, some of her followers get murdered, which acts as the last straw. She begins launching attacks on military convoys to capture the construction supplies and redistribute them to Mantle supplies. Clover actually uses the term 'vigilante' when describing her behaviour to Ironwood.
Voiced By: Michele Sontag [EN]
Debut: Pomp and Circumstance *
A short sheep Faunus who fights alongside Robyn Hill to uphold the rights of Mantle. Her Semblance "Deep Pockets" allows her to dematerialize inanimate objects and store them in a pocket dimension in the palm of her hand, then release them at her discretion.
- Animal Motifs: Sheep. Not only does Fiona have sheep ears instead of human ones, she also has a hairstyle that resembles sheep's wool and she has a shy, gentle persona, which is a common stereotype for sheep. She also wears asymmetrical earrings in her ears, one of which looks like the kind of tagging that happens to farmed sheep.
- Dual Wielding: RWBY: Amity Arena reveals that, when not using her weapon as a staff, she dual wields their alternate mode, a pair of crossbows.
- Hammerspace: Fiona's Semblance allows her to dematerialize inanimate objects at least as large as an armoured truck and the supplies within. RWBY: Amity Arena reveals she can rematerialize whatever she uses her Semblance on at will, with the In-Universe developers expressing frustration at her desire to be a Happy Huntress rather than use her Semblance working at the SDC, ignorant or just uncaring of how horrible the SDC treats Faunus like her.
- Little Bit Beastly: Fiona has a pair of white sheep ears instead of human ones.
Voiced By: Marissa Lenti [EN]
Debut: Pomp and Circumstance *
A tall, butch woman who fights alongside Robyn Hill to uphold the rights of Mantle.
- Flat Character: Compared to the rest of the Happy Huntresses, Joanna has far less dialogue and personality and doesn't even get her Semblance revealed in Volume 7.
- Meaningful Name: Joanna's surname is Greenleaf. She is based on Little John from the Robin Hood tales; in The Gest of Robin Hood, Reynolde Greenleaf is an alias used by Little John.
- Tattooed Crook: Joanna has a number of tattoos, with a few plastered on her face, and she's part of a group that isn't above breaking the law for Mantle's benefit.
Voiced By: Kdin Jensen [EN]
Debut: Sparks *
A tall woman who fights alongside Robyn Hill to uphold the rights of Mantle. She fights with a spear. Her Semblance allows her to generate a bubble of invisibility.
- Invisibility: When Robin blockades Clover's transport of construction materials to the mine, May is able to approach the truck undetected by the huntsmen because she can create a wide-radius invisibility field with her Semblance. She only becomes visible on Robin's orders after it becomes clear that Penny can somehow detect her even when she's invisible.
- Short Hair with Tail: Her blue hair is cut in a chin-length style in the front. However, she has a long braid of hair at the back that is tightly bound with cloth, leaving a tuft of hair poking out the bottom of the braid.
- Strong Family Resemblance: She has the same hair color and a similar eye color to Henry Marigold, who was confirmed by May's VA to be her cousin.
- Transgender: Mays voice actor confirmed on Twitter that she is the first transgender on-screen character to appear in the show.
Voiced by: Eric Baudour [EN]
Debut: A New Approach *
An embittered citizen of Mantle who vocally expresses his resentment of Atlas's lush lifestyle and Ironwood's iron-fisted enforcement of the embargo; he is an ardent supporter of the movement headed by Robyn Hill.
- Large Ham: While in holding with the heroes, he grandly proclaims his reason for being arrested with the exaggeration that he was apprehended for speaking out against Ironwood. The soldiers transporting them retort that Forest has actually been arrested for throwing a brick at their ship.
- Mr. Exposition: By being trapped in the prison transport with the heroes, Forest is able to wax lyrical on who Robyn Hill is, what her credentials are, and why she's so important to the people of Mantle. He therefore introduces the character and the political situation in Mantle to both the heroes and audience at the same time, setting up Robyn's plot line before she enters the story.
- The Resenter: He's clearly resentful that the citizens of Atlas live luxuriously at Mantle's expense while they're left barely scraping by, and also is very outspoken against Ironwood's security policies.
- Sacrificial Lamb: He is a minor character who is quickly killed off after he's introduced; the murder acts as a plot hook to establish that Tyrian is killing people who openly oppose General Ironwood to frame Ironwood as part of a scheme to turn Mantle and Atlas against each other.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Forest is introduced being transported with the arrested heroes. He introduces both the heroes and audience to who Robyn Hill is, her credentials and why she's fighting for Mantle. However, when he's finally released by the Atlesian authorities, he's quickly murdered by Tyrian.