Follow TV Tropes


Characters / Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World

Go To

Note: Any tropes refering to the returning cast goes there.

    open/close all folders 

Major Characters

     Emil Castagnier 

Voiced by: Hiro Shimono (JP), Johnny Yong Bosch (EN)

An introverted, timid young boy from Palmacosta. During the Blood Purge, he came across the bodies of his parents and was severely traumatized. Afterwards, he was forced to move in with his abusive uncle in Luin, where he is universally despised for his weak personality and for accusing town hero Lloyd of being the instigator of the Blood Purge and the murderer of his parents. He wants to avenge his parents, but due to his timid personality finds himself paralyzed with doubt and fear.

At the beginning of the game, Emil signs a magical contract with Tenebrae to become a Knight of Ratatosk and protect Marta. From that moment on, whenever he enters battle he taps into a second, badass, superpowered Anti-Hero personality. With this newfound power, he joins Marta on her quest to retrieve the Centurion Cores and awaken Ratatosk so that he can finally track down Lloyd.

Emil provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Abusive Parents: Well, aunt and uncle, both of whom verbally abused him on a daily basis. Early in the game, Emil even mentions that he hopes his uncle won't hit him again.
  • Adorkable: To Marta and Collette, at least. Richter and Tenebrae find his awkwardness irritating.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: Was ostracized by the villagers of Luin for disliking Lloyd.
  • Amnesiac Hero: Played with in that neither he nor the player knows he has amnesia until The Reveal.
  • Amnesiac God: He is an amnesiac fake personality of the Lord of Monsters Ratatosk.
  • Animal Motifs: Is usually compared to a dog early in the game.
  • Apologises a Lot: He might even be worse then Colette.
  • Apologetic Attacker: After he seals his Superpowered Evil Side.
  • The Atoner: When he finds out that he killed Aster. He doesn't let anything on to the party, though.
  • Badass Adorable: Regular Emil is this after he slowly begins to gain a few levels in badass after Chapter 3.
  • Badass Boast: "I will teach you the true meaning of divine punishment!"
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: The Post-Final Boss, and one of the game's narrative climaxes, is a duel between Emil and Ratatosk within their shared mindscape.
  • Berserk Button: Lloyd Irving for both Emils until later in the story. Regular Emil is one for Ratatosk Mode Emil, who thinks very poorly of him.
  • Bishōnen: Sometimes he's even prettier than Marta.
  • Blood Knight: While in his "Ratatosk Mode".
  • Cloning Blues: Created from Aster's body.
  • Character Development Both Emil and Ratatosk Mode Emil get heaps of it.
    • Emil becomes braver and more confident over the course of the journey. He also becomes the dominant personality out of him and Ratatosk and takes his place and stops Richter's plan.
    • Ratatosk Mode Emil starts out as a huge Jerkass that loathes regular Emil and ends up pissing off everyone in his determination to protect Marta, but softens up a little bit in regards to Marta. After The Reveal that he's really Ratatosk and was close to committing genocide, Ratatosk comes to respect Emil and through the journey, realizes how wrong he was and finds another way to fix the problem of no mana = world dying.
  • The Conscience: Emil is this to Ratatosk.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: Lloyd Irving is a classic Idiot Hero - headstrong, quick to action, confident in himself, and optimistic about bringing change to the worlds. In contrast Emil, is a male Shrinking Violet, lacking confidence in himself, and very quick to apologize until his Character Development and Superpowered Evil Side kicks in.
  • Cover Identity Anomaly: Being the summon spirit Ratatosk in human form, Emil lacks a lot of information that would be expected from a resident of Palmacosta - fishing, the Desian Human Ranch nearby, etc, leading to a lot of exposition for veteran players of the original.
  • Cowardly Lion: Regular Emil is like this for most of the game, he becomes more confident and brave.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: His Ratatosk persona is like this toward Marta. Especially evident after random battles.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Emil is the Darkness element in the Grid but he is the nicest guy in the game. Ratatosk on the other hand doesn't become this until the end of the game after the final boss.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Both Emil and Ratatosk Mode Emil have their moments, usually in victory quotes or skits.
  • Dead Person Impersonation: In very bizarre (and creepy) ways. He impersonates two entirely different dead people at the same time, but the second case is unintentional. His current appearance is that of a boy Ratatosk killed named Aster. Ratatosk then created a fake personality that was designed to quickly fill in the gaps of its memory; during the mass murder in Palmacosta six months prior, a woman named Lana, blinded by her injuries, mistook Ratatosk for her son, Emil, and so the false persona came to believe it was Emil.
  • The Ditz: Has shades of this.
    Sheena: She earned the nickname "HE Bomb".
    Emil: "HE Bomb"? Shouldn't it be "SHE Bomb?"
    Sheena: Emil could give Collete a run for her money.
  • Doomed Hometown: Palmacosta.
  • Evil All Along: "Ratatosk Mode" is not a Super-Powered Evil Side, Ratatosk is Emil's true self. Emil is just a fake personality.
  • Evil Laugh: In "Ratatosk Mode", during his Mystic Arte's extension, Ain Soph Aur.
  • Expy:
  • Eye Color Change: Emil's normally green eyes turn red whenever his "Ratatosk-mode" personality is in control (usually during battle only).
  • Face–Heel Turn: Ratatosk was actually a pretty nice guy until Mithos betrayed him and wrecked his World Tree, causing his Start of Darkness.
  • Fake Memories: Played with in that no-one has given him Fake Memories, but rather he has no memories to begin with and is filling in the blanks as he goes along.
  • Grand Theft Me: The Ratatosk personality eventually forcibly takes over to get the final core. This gives Emil the impetus to seal that personality away.
  • God in Human Form: He really is Ratatosk, who assumed the form of a boy named Aster, possibly because he was the last human he saw before Richter reduced him to core form.
  • Good Is Not Nice: His Ratatosk form.
  • Heel–Face Turn: His Ratatosk persona never liked humans, elves or half-elves to begin with, but compare his personality from chapter 1 to chapter 8 (and especially to his flashback) and you'll see that he has changed.
  • Helpless Good Side: Later, it is revealed that his Superpowered Evil Side is the dormant Ratatosk, and that "Emil" is a Blank Slate personality created when Ratatosk was forced to awaken before he could fully recover from fatal injuries suffered at the hands of Richter. After Emil discovers that he- as Ratatosk- killed Richter's best friend in cold blood (thus triggering the events of the plot and all the disasters that followed), he becomes The Atoner while struggling to reconcile his new and old selves.
  • Humanity on Trial: A completely accidental case. Ratatosk's experiences as Emil convince him to give humanity another chance.
  • Hyde Plays Jekyll: Inverted. After the final battle, Emil pretends that his Ratatosk personality has taken over in an attempt to get his friends to kill him. It doesn't work.
  • Idiot Hair
  • I Want to Be a Real Man: "Courage is the magic that turns dreams into reality."
  • Jerkass: Ratatosk Mode Emil. He even rudely tells party members to be grateful when he revives them in combat. He becomes more of a Jerk with a Heart of Gold towards Marta over time.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: At least according to Marta. He's not even close to the ideal when the two first meet, but he gradually grows into it.
  • Lady and Knight: With Marta. Technically, he's Ratatosk's knight, but since Ratatosk's core is attached to Marta, he's her's as well.
  • Large Ham: His Super-Powered Evil Side
  • Lethal Chef: Subverted. Both normal and Ratatosk Emil have great cooking skills, but while the former takes great care on presentation - doing things like cutting food into the shape of flowers - the latter's meals look rough, or at worst not remotely edible. Both taste just as good.
  • Light Is Not Good: Ain Soph Aur, Ratatosk's signature move.
  • Magic Feather: After he seals away Ratatosk's personality, he can still perform every arte Ratatosk ever learned minus Ain Soph Aur, showing that he can fight just as well as long as he has enough confidence.
  • Memory Gambit: Falls under this category, albeit in an 'unintentional-but-we'll-roll-with-it' sort of way. Really, Ratatosk created a fake version of his dormant state, merged it to the first person he came across, the proceeded to take on the identity of another random person who had just been killed, and the appearance of the best friend of the reason he was in this mess, who he killed himself, all for his own protection until his powers could recover.
  • Nephewism: He went to live with his Aunt Flora and Uncle Alba after his parents were killed.
  • Nice Guy: Emil. He's kind to pretty much everyone, even his enemies to a degree.
  • Non-Action Guy: Lets Ratatosk Mode do all the fighting for him until the second half of Chapter 8.
  • Not So Different:
    • Emil is surprised to learn that Lloyd shares his dislike for sacrificing innocents for the greater good.
    • On the other hand, Ratatosk Mode Emil agrees with the mayor's reasoning that a few have to be sacrificed for the many.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Ratatosk Emil has red eyes to go with the black parts of his outfit. He's also the currently-Face Ratatosk, who wishes to destroy all of humanity. Marta's influence causes a Heel–Face Turn though.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: His eyes turn red when he is in Ratatosk Mode. It's a dead giveaway that he's faking it at the game's end.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: He has this dynamic with himself. Emil's the Sensitive Guy to Ratatosk Mode's Manly Man.
  • Shrinking Violet: A male example. He's not even capable of forming complete sentences around strangers at first. He gets better, but is always very shy and timid.
  • Slasher Smile: His Ratatosk Mode cut-in portrait for his Mystic Arte sports one. He also sports one just before delivering a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown to Magnar.
  • Split Personality: Normally, he's very timid, sweet, and cowardly. But when he goes into his humorously named, "Ratatosk Mode", he turns much more vicious and merciless. Though, he is actually Ratatosk, and "Emil" is actually a fabricated personality.
  • Split-Personality Merge: At the end of the game. Later subverted as Ratatosk basically makes him and Emil two separate people in the good ending.
  • Super-Powered Evil Side: Without it, he couldn't even fight at all. His Ratatosk-mode isn't evil per se, but is extremely vicious with a grayer moral compass.
  • Supreme Chef: While not quite on the level of Genis or Regal, Emil's cooking impresses any who've tried it. Worth noting: Emil tends to make artwork out of his food, while Ratatosk's can only be described as "rough" in appearance...though it's still just as good.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Eventually it comes to light that Emil has not been channeling Ratatosk's power; he himself is Ratatosk, and the moments when he gains power to fight are him using his true abilities. Contrary to everyone's belief, Ratatosk had been awake for months, but was incredibly weak. In order to hide his true identity as he recovered, he created a fake persona using the appearance of a boy he'd killed named Aster. The fake was designed to quickly fill in the gaps of its memory; during the mass murder in Palmacosta six months prior, a woman named Lana, blinded by her injuries, mistook Ratatosk for her son, Emil, and so the false persona came to believe it was Emil. No one in Palmacosta recognizes him because while there was once an Emil Castagnier there, this one looks completely different. The real Emil is implied to be dead, murdered at the same time as his parents. Furthermore, the core Marta has is a fake, designed to make her a target for those who seek to kill Ratatosk before he regains his full power.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Emil does this throughout the game, to the point that during Chapter 8, he seals away Ratatosk's personality and takes on the role of Ratatosk himself and even fights instead of letting Ratatosk Mode do all the work.
  • Tranquil Fury: After he decides to start fighting as Emil, instead of as Ratatosk, his Mystic Arte cut-in portrait has shades of this (and happens during the charge-up phase).
  • Tsundere: His Ratatosk form shows some shades of type A, especially toward Marta.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: He's had no combat training before the events of the game, and his artes tend to be some variant of "wild, long swing" for the most part. That said, he's the split personality of Ratatosk, and is, thus, a Physical God.
  • Villain Protagonist: He's actually Ratatosk, the Lord of Monsters who wanted to Kill All Humans. Ratatosk does become a good-aligned Antihero eventually however.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Healing the Tree is one thing. Eradicating humanity so that they can't hurt it again... is another.
  • You Killed My Parents: Thinks that Lloyd did it. Turns out Decus took Lloyd's form with a Centurion's core and framed him.

     Marta Lualdi 

Voiced by: Rie Kugimiya (JP), Laura Bailey (EN)

A former member of the Vanguard. She believes that Emil saved her life during the Blood Purge, and from that point idolised him as a Knight in Shining Armor. When she meets up with her hero six months later- and he becomes a Knight of Ratatosk- she drags him into a quest to retrieve the Centurion Cores before Lloyd does. She absolutely idolises Emil and can't seem to get it through her head that he's not the person she believes him to be.

Marta lived in Palmacosta during the events of the first game until it was destroyed during the disastrous revival of the World Tree at the end of disc one. She blames the Chosen One, Colette for the destruction of her home and the resulting death of her mother.

Marta provides examples of the following tropes.

  • Action Girl: She's way more competent than Emil in a fight when they first met. Even after he gets stronger, she's still got him beat in terms of raw power.
  • Badass Adorable: A cute, unassuming girl that kicks a lot of ass. And without the aid of an Exsphere, no less.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Ratatosk Mode Emil is exactly the kind of man that Marta imagined Emil to be. Later she finds out the hard way just what an absolute Jerkass he is.
  • Berserk Button: Do not threaten Emil when she is around. Notably played for dramatic effect near the end of the game when she kills Alice, briefly dropping her Action Girl and Badass Adorable persona in favour of a quiet, Dead Serious monologue.
  • Bodyguard Crush: Of the "guarded has a crush on the bodyguard" variety. Emil became her guardian knight, a Knight of Ratatosk, in order to protect her and Ratatosk's core.
  • Character Development: Marta starts out as a Clingy Jealous Girl who ignores Emil's real personality for the one of the manly badass Knight in Shining Armor she pictured him to be until he calls her out on it. She matures and comes to see Emil for the person he really is and falls in love with him for who he really is. Marta also matures in the way she handles the situation with the Vanguard and the fact her father is the leader. At first she just kept running away and trying to avoid confronting him, but she comes to accept that she has to stop him to save him from himself. This pays off big time.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Her defining personality trait. Deconstructed to a degree, since it doesn't win Emil over; it just annoys him throughout the journey until he calls her out on it because he's sick of it. She tones down on this via Character Development.
  • Clingy MacGuffin: Ratatosk's Core is attached to Marta's forehead. The only way to remove it is for her to die. Except it's a fake, planted there by Ratatosk to throw off his enemies.
  • Combat Medic: Marta is one of the main attackers and gets all of the single target heals as well as some buffs.
  • Covert Pervert: She says Regal looks kinda sexy in his prison uniform in one of her journal entries. She then embarrassingly retorts this statement.
  • Cute Little Fangs One fang, actually.
  • Defector from Decadence: Marta was a member of the Vanguard, whose top leader was her own father Commander Brute. She left the organization after learning her father was planning to use the Centurions' Cores to gain power by obliterating Tethe'alla.
  • Did You Just Romance Cthulhu?: When Emil turns out to be Ratatosk.
  • Divine Date: She's crazy for Emil, and he eventually returns her feelings. That said, Emil is Ratatosk, the Lord of Monsters, and a Physical God.
  • Doomed Hometown: Palmacosta. Twice, in fact.
  • Flower in Her Hair: Two on both sides actually. They're actually fake, but her mother wore them on her first date with her father. Marta then says that they brought them together and now they'll bring her and Emil together (who can only laugh awkwardly).
  • Girlish Pigtails: She has very long pigtails that go past her knees.
  • Glass Cannon: Marta deals great damage and can heal really well but against heavy hitting enemies she can't take many hits.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Attacks by spinning in circles, with disks attached to her right wrist.
  • Lethal Chef: Mainly because she never bothered to taste her cooking, and her father said that it was delicious. In a subversion from the norm, once she realizes how bad she is she vows to get better and eventually becomes a decent cook.
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Marta's father is revealed to be Brute Lualdi, the leader of the Vanguard.
  • Light 'em Up: Her primary offensive magic.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Deconstructed in that the object of her affection finds her constant attention and praise annoying. Not only does the journey she takes Emil on not improve his life, it actively makes it worse. Emil and Ratatosk both call her out on this behavior late in the game, with Emil telling her he's not a badass knight in shining armor like she wants him to be, and Ratatosk telling her that she's nothing more than an annoying brat. However, it later gets reconstructed as Marta goes from a petty schoolgirl crush on Emil's dark side to legitimately falling in love with the real Emil.
  • The Medic: She is the primary healer of the party and gets all of the single target healing spells.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Goes at least to her knees. Certainly proves Dawn Of The New World is past the first game's No Flow in CGI.
  • Rebellious Princess: Her father is the Vanguard's leader who is trying to become King and Marta is rebelling against his plans and antics.
  • Red Herring: The core on Marta's forehead isn't real. It's a fake put there by the real Ratatosk to draw attention away from him.
  • The Ugly Guy's Hot Daughter: Her father is Brute, who, while not necessarily ugly, is no model.
  • You Killed My Mother: Toward Colette. She acknowledges that she was just blaming Colette for what happened and apologises later in the game though.


Voiced by: Hochu Otsuka (JP), Christopher Corey Smith (EN)

The Centurion of Darkness, and Emil and Marta's guide. As a Centurion, he is the servant of Ratatosk and helps both Emil and Marta so that his master can be reawakened. He can control Darkness-elemental monsters, and sends them to fight in his place.

Tenebrae is extremely snarky and has a dark (no pun intended) sense of humour. He takes delight in teasing fellow Centurion Aqua and injecting conversations with mischievous comments that serve only to make bad situations worse. Despite this, he is often forced to act as the Straight Man to the insanity of the other party members, and has a minor complex over being regarded as "too old".

Tenebrae provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Accidental Misnaming: His name is not Doggie, Tenebie, Mr. Doggy, Tenby, Tenny, Brae-Brae, Trae, Mr. Fairy or Paw Pad, though he eventually gives up and allows Tenebie.
  • Anti-Villain: He's fully aware that Ratatosk intends to exterminate humanity, but wants to resurrect him anyway. He deceives Marta and Emil the whole time to do so as well. However, its implied that he's hoping that Ratatosk will simply change his mind.
  • Berserk Button: Don't call him a dog, he hates it. Also don't betray Ratatosk or be his enemy, the scene where Aqua tells Richter to destroy Ratatosk's core is one of the few scenes where Tenebrae is completely angry and yelling.
  • Butt-Monkey: Especially if Colette is around, which prompts him to say that his reputation is done for.
  • Casting a Shadow: Darkness is his very source and substance. According to Raine, the way his fur feels even reminds her of darkness.
  • Catchphrase: He tends to say "How rude" a fair amount.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Although he does take delight in playing harmless pranks, snarking and making terrible puns.
  • Deadpan Snarker: There's a reason he's called "Spiteful Tenebrae".
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Colette starts by calling him "Doggie." When he objects, she goes for the slightly more respectful "Mr. Doggie", before eventually settling on "Tennebie", which sticks. Presea also adds "Paw Pad" and "Fairy" later in the game.
  • The Gadfly: Dips into this on occasion. Probably the funniest example being him deliberately misinterpreting Sheena and Regal's comments on how close Zelos is to his half-sister Seles as them saying that Zelos has a crush on her. Right in front of him. Zelos is not amused.
  • Grumpy Old Man: Centurion, actually. And only sometimes.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Saves the party from a bomb in Meltokio. It doesn't actually kill him, though; it just returns him to a dormant state, and the party has to make a detour to the Temple of Darkness to revive him.
  • Invisible to Normals: Actually invisible to everyone, if he so chooses- comes with the territory of being in charge of Dark mana. Lampshaded in an early skit.
  • Meaningful Name: Tenebrae is Latin for "darkness", and he's the Centurion of Darkness, in charge of the resource distribution system for Dark mana.
  • Moment Killer: And darn proud of it, too.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Unlike Aqua, who turned on her master when she learned of his genocidal plans, Tenebrae remained loyal to the very end.
  • Odd Friendship: With Raine. She finds him fascinating, and he adores the attention.
  • Old Retainer: His design and personality are meant to evoke this. And he's Ratatosk's only remaining servant that isn't sleeping or turned traitor.
  • Pungeon Master: Sheena even lampshades this in one skit. And then there was one that was so bad, Genis and Raine punish him with Prism Stars. And this is not Disproportionate Retribution either, it really was that bad of a pun.
  • Shipper on Deck: Played with. He give Emil pointers about winning Marta over, but he's only half-serious about it. In his asides, he's pretty confident that their relationship is going nowhere. Given who Emil really is, that's no surprise.
  • Ship Tease: Subverted. He implies to Emil that he and Aqua have Belligerent Sexual Tension going on, but it's pretty obvious that he's just being a jerk.
  • Trickster Mentor: It's often very unclear whether he's giving Emil legitimate advice or just screwing with him. Tenebrae thinks it's hilarious.
  • Undying Loyalty: Towards Ratatosk the entire game and towards Emil, once The Reveal occurs.

     Richter Abend 

Voiced by: Kenji Hamada (JP), Kyle Hebert (EN)

A mysterious traveller, Richter is a member of the Vanguard whose goal is to kill Marta and claim the Core of Ratatosk on her forehead. His partner on this quest is the Centurion of Water, Aqua. He first meets Emil in Luin and inspires the young boy to be more courageous; eventually, he becomes a mentor and friend to Emil despite technically being his enemy.

Richter is an incredibly strong-willed individual, to the extent that he is unaffected by the power of the un-hatched Centurion Cores and can even unconsciously influence the Centurions themselves (as shown by Aqua falling in love with him). He is quiet and keeps to himself, believing that one should say no more than is necessary and that once an emotion is explicitly expressed it loses its meaning. He loathes Ratatosk, calling him a "Demon King".

Richter provides examples of the following tropes:

  • An Axe to Grind and Cool Sword: His Sol & Mani, respectively. Absorb HP and TP from enemies with every blow, speed up his casting time, and they're fire-elemental.
  • Anti-Villain: If he had a different opinion of what Ratatosk is, he'd be a party member.
  • Badass Bookworm: He's an extremely talented researcher, as well as a skilled Magic Knight who can fight on even footing with Lloyd.
  • Badass Longcoat: His Sea Fire cloak. As a garment, it's made with leather and synthetic fibers. As an equipment item, it resists all elements.
  • Big Bad A very unwilling one.
  • Bishōnen: Aqua even calls him "beautiful" at one point.
  • Broken Pedestal: For Emil as soon as he discovers that he's after Marta. It gets repaired after they go on a few sidequests together. Only to be broken again when Emil discovers that he is the Big Bad.
  • The Comically Serious: He laughs at one of Emil's jokes. And then wonders why everyone is so shocked. And every time he tries to make a joke it falls flat, because no-one can work out if he's actually joking.
  • Crutch Character: Richter is always at least 10 levels above the average level the player would have without intense grinding whenever Emil joins him in his sidequest. Richter also has First Aid, good stats and powerful artes. The player can't make use of his Mystic Arte, but Richter doesn't need one.
  • Determinator: The man is essentially willpower on two legs. In fact, Tenebrae speculates that his willpower is so strong that it actually changed Aqua's very nature and caused her to fall in love with him.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Strays into this category with his skit portraits, although his model has a masculine enough figure
  • Evil Genius: Of the Vanguard.
  • Evil Mentor: Unless they're directly fighting, he and Emil have a mentor-protégé sort of relationship. Richter can never bring himself to do anything more than give Emil gruff advice, and Emil can't see Richter as anyone other than the person who gave him the courage to stand up to his uncle. Come the endgame, the 'Evil' part is turns out to be false.
  • Gambit Roulette: It turns out that Richter is gambling everything on a crazy plan to resurrect his deceased best friend, Aster. To this end, he manipulates the Vanguard using the Centurion Cores and makes a Deal with the Devil to unleash the demons of Niflheim on the world in exchange for Aster's life... a deal that he also plans on double-crossing.
  • Genius Bruiser: As his spectacles suggest, he's actually a scientist.
  • Good All Along: Yes, he was going to kill Ratatosk. No, he wasn't going to sell the world out to demons to do so. He had a backup plan involving sacrificing his body for the rest of eternity to take Ratatosk's place.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: He joins the party at the start of the game for a few battles, helps Emil fight a dragon at the end of Chapter 3 and then joins for three parts of a sidequest revolving around him and Emil travelling together briefly.
  • Half-Human Hybrid He's actually a half-elf.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: His Gambit Roulette was supposed to end this way so that Aster could be revived without letting the demons of Niflheim into the world.
  • Infernal Retaliation / Playing with Fire: His final boss/Lord of Flames form. It's also a Shout-Out to Abyssion, Symphonia's Bonus Boss and the last person who tried to tap into the power of Niflheim.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Aster.
  • Hot Scientist: He's a former researcher with the Imperial Research Academy. Well, prisoner is more like it, since he's a half-elf.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's blunt, brutally honest, and doesn't bother with niceties, but that's only because he believes in being straight with people. He's actually pretty nice underneath it all.
  • Lethal Chef: Mainly because he's never cooked before.
  • Making a Splash: He's given a water element in the menus, likely due to his association with Aqua.
  • The Man Behind the Man He's the true leader of the Vanguard, and is the one responsible for their more radical turn.
  • Megane: A pretty classic example. Likely he's going for the studious, aloof, Stoic Spectacles variety.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: If it wasn't for him killing Ratatosk, Ratatosk would have committed genocide. Downplayed, since this was his intention all along.
  • Noble Demon: Much of his criticism of the people around him is followed by an apology for his rudeness. Also, despite helping to set up The Vanguard's combat unit, he's not as bad a guy as its current members.
  • Pet the Dog: He makes it blatantly clear that he is going to kill Marta to get Ratatosk's core. That doesn't stop him from giving Emil some jewellery to serve as a present for Marta, so as to stop her from flipping out about the fact that he was off in the Balacruf Mausoleum.
  • Tricked-Out Gloves: His Flambeau provide an offensive boostnote . It probably helps that they're made from wyvern skin.
  • Specs of Awesome: His Dual Blaze. Yes, the glasses are head armour; they boost his Arte attack.
  • Übermensch: His personality and the way he interacts with others just ooze this. He even references Nietzsche in the name of his trademark Mystic Arte Eternal Recurrence. Turns out he wasn't like this at all...
    Richter (to Emil) : As long as you waste your time worrying about making others angry, your life will always be this way. If you don't speak up, nothing will change. Then again, if you don't mind being treated like a "monster," feel free to ignore me.
    Frank: Richter, not everyone can live the way that you do. Many people in this world must make compromises to get by.
    Richter: Compromises? He's not making compromises with the world. He's rejecting it. Retreating into his shell and playing the victim is what makes him feel safe. But that's not living. It's just wasting away until you die.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist Considering that Ratatosk was about to destroy all of humanity, killing him wasn't really an unreasonable response. And he's fully aware of the consequences of doing so; he had a plan for that as well.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: His life philosophy, which he tries impart to Emil.


Voiced by: Youko Honda (JP), Wendee Lee (EN)

The Centurion of Water, she is Richter's constant partner and ally. She is utterly infatuated with Richter and has actually renounced her loyalty to Ratatosk in favour of following Richter everywhere he goes. As the Centurion of Water, she can make pacts with Water-elemental monsters, using them to fight in her place. She tends to be highly emotional, and shares a love-hate relationship with Tenebrae.

  • Anti-Villain: She's actually quite nice and sociable to Emil. She's just devoted to Richter. And she has good reason for abandoning Ratatosk.
  • Bodyguard Crush: She's very much in love with Richter. Normally this is impossible for Centurions, but Tenebrae suspects that Richter's strong will had an unprecedented effect on her.
  • The Dragon: To Richter.
  • Friendly Enemy: She's actually nicer to Emil than Richter is, most likely because she can sense that Richter is fonder of him than he lets on. This is inverted with Tenebrae; while she's friendly to Emil and Richter is at least grudgingly polite to Tenebrae, she and Tenebrae can barely tolerate each other's presence.
  • Love Makes You Evil: She's the only Centurion to have sided against Ratatosk, solely because she loves Richter. Turns out, this is inverted, since she also found Ratatosk's plan to wipe out humanity reprehensible.
  • Making a Splash: Naturally, considering she's the Centurion of Water.
  • Meaningful Name: Like Tenebrae, her name is in Latin. Hers means "water".
  • Summon Magic: Her only method of fighting is summoning Water-element monsters.
  • With Friends Like These...: Her relationship with Tenebrae. He loves winding her up, and she lets her buttons get pushed far too easily.


Other Characters

     Lord Brute 

Voiced by: Rintauro Nishi (JP), JB Blanc (EN)

The leader of the Vanguard.

Tropes associated with Brute:

  • The Atoner: Once he's freed from the influence of the Centurion's core.
  • Bald of Evil: Fitting for a megamanaical would-be dictator. Though that's really just Solum's core talking. He's not actually evil at all.
  • Big Bad: Except not really. He's just Richter's front man.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Thanks to Solum's core
  • Catchphrase: "Means and methods are insignificant in the eyes of justice!"
  • Dishing Out Dirt: He mainly uses Earth-element Artes in combat.
  • Large Ham: Very much so. Most of it seems to be induced by insanity.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father Marta's father.
  • Pet the Dog: A bizarre case of this happens while he's Brainwashed and Crazy. He thinks Marta is disagreeing with his plans because she's driven mad by Ratatosk's core, so he promises to use the other cores to remove it safely. He's operating on Insane Troll Logic, but it shows that he still cares about his daughter more than other Vanguard members like Richter do.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He's willing to do anything to stop Tethe'alla's oppression of Sylvarant. And we do mean anything.


Voiced by: Mami Kingetsu (JP), Janice Kawaye (EN)

A commander in the Vanguard, one of the primary antagonists of the game. Despite looking like a little girl, she is sadistic and obsessed with gaining power.

Tropes associated with Alice:

  • Alice Allusion: One of the many literary allusions she's got going.
  • An Ice Person: Her mystic arte, Fimbulvetr. It's a gigantic explosion of ice.
  • Bad Boss: She uses her soldiers as seats when she's tired and beats up her subordinates and carved "Alice's Pet" into Hawk once she bested him for the combat commander position.
  • Cute and Psycho: And that's putting it very, very mildly. She's a sadist through and through, but her cruelty is accompanied by this... cutesy demeanor that wouldn't be out of place in the moe fandom.
  • Dark Action Girl: Don't let her appearance fool you, she's the commander of the Vanguard's combat division for a reason.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: She was the only half-elven girl in an orphanage, where everyone treated her like crap. She only had one friend, Decus, and when it looked like he was about to be lynched for a crime he didn't commit, she used a demonic pact to summon demons to get everyone killed.
  • Deconstruction: In most any other Tales game or even in another Japanese RPG? She would easily be a party member, but because she never truly learns that Love is not a weakness or that you really should get over your petty hatreds, the closest she gets to a Heel–Face Turn is a Dying Moment of Awesome where Decus never gets to hear her say she actually did love him.
  • Despair Event Horizon: When Decus takes Emil's sword for her, she finally can't take it anymore and admits she loves him back, and then goes into a rage to avenge him.
  • The Dreaded: Everyone in the Vanguard who isn't Richter, Brute, or Decus is downright terrified of her, and for good reason. Most people in Sylvarant also know well to steer clear of her, too, if they know what's good for them.
  • Dying Declaration of Love She realizes she has feelings for Decus right after he's killed. She, herself is killed shortly after.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Directly after she says that she's 'tired', a Vanguard member immediately prepares himself as a makeshift bench for her, with Alice sitting down like she belongs there. Then when Hawk tries to explain himself, she promptly - read: viciously - whips him for talking back... with a near-constant smile and cutesy voice all-throughout.
  • The Fake Cutie: She's adorable. She's also physically abusive toward her subordinates, doesn't hesitate to try to kill Marta, and just about everyone in the Vanguard who isn't Brute, Decus, or Richter is terrified of her.
  • Foil: To Mithos from the previous game. Both are half-elven orphans who both experienced discrimination from humans, and who had serious issues dealing with loss: Alice took the loss of her parents and the near-loss of Decus to become a commander in the Vanguard and as motivation to become powerful. Mithos, on the other hand, went completely batshit insane after Martel's death, after he became powerful, and arguably because of it. Both hate humans (and have every reason to do so), except that Alice is basically the Token Minority of the Vanguard, where as Mithos only has (well, had) only one human with him in Cruxis, and was ultimately betrayed by just about everyone he's ever trusted except for the Desians, whereas Alice had the Undying Loyalty of Decus right up until his death, which was the only time when Alice realized her feelings for him. Mithos had the power Alice wanted, whereas Alice had the trusted companion Mithos wanted, and when it was all said and done, it only brought anguish to both of them.
  • Freudian Excuse: All of her desire for power and her refusal to rely on others stems from the fact that she lost her parents, grew up in an orphanage where she was routinely bullied for being a half-elf, and almost lost her only friend, Decus. From that point on, she swore she'd never depend on anybody, and wanted to acquire power for herself at any cost. The fact that she had such a crappy childhood probably has a lot to do with where her sadistic personality came from, too.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: She's a half-elf.
  • Hypocrite: She says "No one likes a strong-willed little girl. Come on, Decus" during one encounter with Marta, but doesn't realize/care that this applies to herself/Decus. And then later when she calls Marta a hypocrite, it kinda undermines her whole Jerkass Has a Point statements a little, since Alice is one herself.
  • Jerkass: And that's putting it very, very mildly.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Alice is a horrible sadistic person, but she does have a point that Marta relied too much on Emil and Ratatosk early on, instead of using her own strength.
  • Love Is a Weakness: She refuses to fall in love because she feels that caring about another will make her weaker. She gets proven right when her love for Decus gets her killed.
  • Mood Whiplash: Alice invokes this trope so much. Most people, upon seeing a character who looks like this and speaks with a very high-pitched and "cutsey" sounding voice would think "She's going to be a Party Member!" or "Well she may be beating her subordinates, but she will perform a Heel–Face Turn and see the error of her ways." Turns out? She is The Dreaded, a Dark Action Girl (despite wearing white), and use an absolutely "cute" voice even when telling the characters she's about to kill them, treating Decus or her subordinates like crap, or beating monsters into obeying her. While she does get a redemption, it's right when she dies at the end.
  • More Than Mind Control: From her "The Reason You Suck" Speech, Marta says she's willing to forgive Alice since she thinks she was Brainwashed and Crazy. Alice hammers in just how much of a Jerkass she really is when she says she wasn't, since she desired everything.
  • The Nicknamer: An odd case. If you're a male and she gives you a nickname, congratulations! That means she likes you, for better or worse. If you're a female and she gives you a nickname, watch out. It's one of the only hints we get that she likes Decus more than she lets on.
  • No Cure for Evil: Averted; she'll regularly spam First Aid when you fight her, meaning you should Shoot the Medic First.
  • Not-So-Well-Intentioned Extremist: Downplayed; she's obviously not a fan of Tethe'alla's oppression of the Sylvaranti people, but she's generally only in the Vanguard as an excuse to hurt people and to become more powerful.
  • Older Than They Look: She's at least 18. Justified because she's a half-elf.
  • Pet the Dog: In her sidequest. She also saves an old woman that's trying to get a doctor to help her grandson that's being attacked and abused by a Jerkass clergyman during the events of the game and gives the old women a recommendation to get her grandson treated for free.
  • Punctuated Pounding: Well, more like Punctuated Sadism when she whips Hawk in Asgard.
    You should know better than to...
    (cut to Marta as she winces)
    (cut to Emil as he winces)
    (cut to Tenebrae as he winces)
    (cut to the assembled Vanguard soldiers as they wince, and Hawk is knocked on-screen)
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: She gives one to Marta before she and Decus fight Emil and Marta in the Ginnugagap. Alice's speech basically consists of ripping Marta a new one for being powerless and relying so much on Emil and Ratatosk to save and protect her.
  • Sadist: It's the first word that comes to Marta's mind when describing her, along with the Shout-Out 'super sadist'. And then we see her Establishing Character Moment...
  • Say It with Hearts: All of her non-magical artes end with a ♡.
  • Shadow Archetype: To Emil. Both of them control monsters, but while Emil befriends them, Alice enslaves them. They also both grew up as outcasts, but while Emil became withdrawn and submissive, Alice became sadistic and bloodthirsty.
  • Shout-Out: Her three 'pets,' Aramis, Athos, and Porthos, are named after the three main characters from The Three Musketeers. Her unique Artes are all also named after famous artistic works, such as "The Red and the Black" by Stendhal, and "Winter Daydreams" by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.
  • Unstoppable Rage: She goes apeshit after Decus died in her arms confessing his love to her and realized she loved him too, and picks Decus' BFS to trying exacting revenge. It doesn't last long as she's quickly killed off.
  • Villainous Breakdown: When Decus dies.
  • Whip It Good: Her weapon is some sort of hybrid between a rapier and a riding crop.


Voiced by: Akio Suyama (JP), Doug Erholtz (EN)

A commander in the Vanguard. He's obsessed with Alice.

Tropes associated with Decus:

  • BFS: He wields what resembles a claymore and does so with ease. Alice tries to use it to avenge him and she can barely hold it.
  • Bishōnen: As is standard for the series.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Definitely has a few screws loose. Aside from the obsession with Alice (enough that his Mystic Arte has him stopping in the middle of a fight to stare at a picture of her,) he's also regularly making weird flamboyant motions with his hands and proudly wears cologne that can only be described as chemical warfare which becomes a key factor in finding out that he's posing as Lloyd.
  • The Dragon: To Alice.
  • Dying Declaration of Love He chooses his last moments to come out and say that he loves Alice. Not that he hadn't made it painfully obvious beforehand.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: He thinks that his cologne has this effect.
  • Friendly Enemy: On the few occasions in which the party speaks to him when he isn't around Alice or under the effects of Solum's core. He even says at one point that he'd rather not fight Emil but knows that he'll have to.
  • Gratuitous German: "Ausbruch!" "Strahl!" "Stein Hagel!" "Trombe!" "Lawine!" "Sturmwind!"note  And his Mystic Arte is the ever popular Strum und Drang.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He loves Alice so much, he jumps in the way and takes Emil's sword for her, which causes her to go through the Despair Event Horizon.
  • Large Ham: While under the influence of Solum's core. Even without that he still is kind of hammy.
    Decus: Die in my arms!
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: It's hard to tell unless you see him from behind but Decus has a ponytail all the way down his back.
  • Love Makes You Evil: Decus himself is a pretty decent guy who's a little...out there. However's he's hopelessly in love with a sadist who regularly asks him to commit horrific acts on her behalf, which he does without any hesitation.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: He doesn't give a damn about the Vanguard, the world, or anything else. Everything he does is done out of his devotion to Alice.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: He used Solum's core to transform into Lloyd and committed all of the crimes that Lloyd supposedly committed.
  • Playing with Fire: He uses it in his Mystic Arte.
  • The Power of Love: Used in his Mystic Arte.
  • Rescue Romance: He fell in love with Alice after she saved him from a lynch mob.
  • Sanity Slippage: Thanks to prolonged exposure to Solum's core.
  • Say My Name: ALICE!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Shadow Archetype: To Marta. His slavish devotion to Alice is a rather disturbing mirror to Marta's fangirl obsession with Emil. But she eventually grows to love Emil as a person; Decus allows his love of Alice to turn him into a psychopath.
  • Stalker with a Crush: His obsession with Alice, although they're both villains.
  • Taking the Bullet For Alice in their final confrontation with Emil and Marta.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Until Brute takes Solum's core away from him.
  • What Does He See in Her?: Alice doesn't return his affections and outright trashes him in front of his face. What does he see in her? Actually....she truly does love him...
  • You Gotta Have Purple Hair

     Aster Laker 

Voced by: Hiro Shimono (JP), Johnny Yong Bosch (EN)

A scholar who conducted research on the Great Kharlan Tree and Richter's deceased best friend.

  • Ahoge Just like Emil.
  • Berserk Button: Insulting his friends, or any half-elves, for that matter.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: In the Successors of Hope novel, he loses it when he hears another researcher refer to Richter as a "stupid half-elf".
  • Bishōnen Where do you think Emil gets it from?
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Implied by Richter, who mentions that he had "a few screws loose in his head".
  • Cute Scientist
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Richter
  • Identical Stranger: With Emil. Subverted in that it's actually EMIL that looks like him.
  • Nice Guy: How else could he have befriended someone like Richter?
  • Only Friend: To Richter
  • Orphan's Plot Trinket: In the Sucessors of Hope novel, he has a pendant with his infamous catchphrase etched onto it. After he loses it in the Balacruf ruins, it finds itself passing through the hands of every party member of the original game (sans Lloyd) as they try to return it, until it finally makes its way back to Richter, by then becoming a Tragic Keepsake.
  • Plot-Triggering Death The whole Ratatosk fiasco was set off because he killed Aster.
  • Posthumous Character In more ways than one, since Emil has taken on his appearance.
  • Teen Genius: He was in his mid to late teens.
  • The Lost Lenore: Non-romantic example to Richter. In fact, everything Richter does in the game all leads up to his plan to revive Aster.
  • Walking Spoiler: His very existence is a huge spoiler.


Voiced by: Yuji Kishi (JP), Patrick Seitz (EN)

A soldier in the Vanguard. He works for Alice, and is often treated as her personal whipping boy. He has a particularly unfriendly rivalry with Magnar.

Tropes associated with Hawk:

  • A Father to His Men: The few times he's shown in command of his troops, as opposed to being commanded by Alice, he's shown to care for them a lot.
  • Butt-Monkey: His first scene with Alice has her beat him brutally for asking her to be patient. It's also revealed that she apparently carved "Alice's Pet" into him once she kicked his ass for the commander of combat position in the Vanguard.
  • Lean and Mean: He's definitely one of the crueler of the Vanguard, even if Alice has him beat by a pretty substantial margin.
  • Looks Like Cesare: It's a lot clearer in the Anime opening and offical artworks.
  • Not So Harmless: Just because he's treated as a complete Butt-Monkey doesn't mean you should take him lightly when you have to fight him.


A soldier in the Vanguard. The first time you meet him, he will claim to be following orders from the Church of Martel.

Tropes associated with Magnar:

  • The Brute
  • False Flag Operation: He shows up pretending to be Commandant of the Martel Knights but he's really just a member of the Vanguard in disguise.
  • Funny Afro: Use enough lightning artes on him during the second fight, and he'll sprout one of these.
  • I Lied: After Marta gives herself up in order to save the village of Luin, he orders it to be burned down anyway.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Ratatosk Emil beats seven shades of piss out of him after their fight.

Example of: