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Nightmare Fuel / Under Night In-Birth

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Uh-oh, Roger stumbled too close to the Abyss. I hope he's oka- JESUS CHRIST!
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Warning: Spoilers Off applies to Moments pages. Proceed at your own risk.

Perhaps it was for the best that it took 5 years for Under Night In-Birth to get a story mode, because the story and world of the game is straight-up terrifying.


  • Merkava. Good Christ, Merkava.
    • To start, he's a Void, so he's already got points for being an Eldritch Abomination alone. But that's not going into how he looks. He's a lanky and unnaturally tall humanoid... Thing with thin, spindly arms and a strange, bird-like face with pin-prick white, unblinking eyes and a maw full of teeth... Teeth that look way too similar to that of a human's.
    • In terms of personality; He's a Void with a human conscious, meaning that unlike many other Voids, he has the ability to think and act for himself. However, his mind is incredibly broken due to being stuck inside of a Void's body, and as a result, his natural instinct to consume EXS drives him into a murderous, cannibalistic frenzy, meaning that he can go from relatively civil to violently bloodthirsty in a mere instant. What doesn't help is that while he despises what he has become, he makes it very clear that he has no sympathy for the people he kills.
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    • There's also how he communicates. He doesn't simply talk out loud, he directly transfers his stream of thought to people's heads, and you get to hear this in the form of a booming, distorted, barely human sounding voice. The noises he usually makes in the outside world? Bloodcurdling, inhuman shrieks...
    • Oh, and we couldn't possibly forget about his Infinite Worth EXS, "I Overrun"; Which, while short, is absolutely mortifying. Merkava starts by latching onto his opponent, and then the screen fades to black. When his opponent opens their eyes again, they're treated to a pleasant first person view of Merkava leering over them and eating them alive. No, we don't mean eating the camera, we mean he's violently tearing bloody chunks out of his opponent's midsection.
    • Then there's his Leitmotif, Unseen Entities, a strange, otherworldly trance/dubstep track with a constantly repeating Brown Note.
  • The concept of the Hollow Night and the Void that inhabit it seem as if they've been ripped straight out of a Cosmic Horror Story. Every full moon, a part of the real world is merged with another dimension. If you're caught inside, you have no way to contact the outside world, and you can't leave until day breaks again. Inside of this Night are monsters that normal humans cannot see, and a single bite from them can turn you into one of them.
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    • In simple terms, Voids are goddamn terrifying. As stated above, for starters, they cannot be perceived by the normal eye, which means that those who cannot see them can find themselves being ripped apart by absolutely nothing. They can take many different forms as seen from Merkava and Azhi Dahaka but their most powerful form are tall, freakish beings covered in darkness and sporting empty, dead eyes. Chronicle Mode describes them further as they can take upon many forms, but they are limited to the amount of EXS they spawn near.
      • Even worse, Word of God has stated that Voids don't always feed on EXS, there are Voids out there that can feed on your very intelligence and emotions.
    • Fridge Horror kicks in when you realize that most of the playable characters in the series are school children.
    • Nearly all characters who we see turn into in-births don't have pleasant memories of the event. Hyde, Phonon, and Chaos showed particular signs of absolute fear and the feeling as if they were being suffocated. Hyde and Phonon got away with bites while Chaos in particular gave out an ear-piercing scream after he was presumably chomped on. Even the more tougher In-Births like Gordeau and Carmine aren't ashamed to admit that they were dead scared the night they were bitten. Even the cheerful Yuzuriha doesn't waive this experience off either as seen during Chronicle Mode when her older sister Hiroha sees her off one time as Yuzuriha decides to patrol around town. Hiroha says that she'll know Yuzuriha will return home safely and Yuzuriha, in an uncharacteristically low tone, mutters that she used to think that too. Nanase is lucky to not have witnessed the void that bit her from behind or to have been alone as Hyde swiftly slayed the creature. Nanase lost consciousness quick and this lack of trauma makes it slightly more infuriating that she blames Hyde for everything when in fact she owes her life to him instead of being eaten alive if he wasn't there.
    • The transformation into a Void is also shown to be anything but pleasant if the two examples shown are anything to go by. Roger happens to give a fairly grim description of how he feels during his transformation and we actually see Waldstein thrashing around in agony.
    • Byakuya's experience however takes the cake as the most unnatural encounter with a void. In an already mentally unstable state, he verbally lashes out in a public area how he'd rather have seen everyone around him killed if it meant having his sister be among the living again. Soon after, Byakuya finds himself in a pitch-black abyss. Clearly he knows that he's just going crazy and runs with it until he eventually encounters two enormous glowing eyes staring at him. Byakuya is scared for his life and begs for his sister to save him but he soon goes quiet and peacefully accepts his fate. He wakes up the next morning outside in a park somewhere and feels his Predators for the first time.
  • Byakuya himself probably qualifies as the most terrifying playable character in the game. Just from looking at him and his mannerisms is enough to tell you that something about him is off. He normally comes off as a soft voiced and polite young man, to absolutely unsettling levels, showing little to no emotion aside from his interactions with his "sister". Then we get into his true colors. He's a childish psychopath with a terrifyingly unhealthy obsession with his supposed big sister. The times where he isn't emotionless are arguably even worse, flipping between a Giggling Villain and a ranting, raving lunatic. His Chronicle Mode chapter puts him in a more tragic light, but it still manages to be fucking terrifying, showing his slow descent into insanity after the death of his sister. To compound on this strange behavior, his transformation into an in-birth most likely spawned his cannibalistic tendencies.
  • Butt-Monkey status aside, Carmine is pretty damn unnerving. From his brutal and savage fighting style, the fact that he can heal himself by stealing the life force of others, his deranged facial expressions, his absolutely manic sounding Leitmotif and his psychotic laughter.
  • Roger's transformation into a Void provides a full example of "voidification" that Merkava presumably went through and what Gordeau and Chaos fear what Hilda may end up as. At first, Gordeau recognizes Roger's figure from afar and calls out to him, only to receive no response. As Roger trudges closer, Gordeau tries to desperately get Roger back to his senses but Roger has fully crossed the point of no-return and snarls. Gordeau tries to get closer but Enkidu stops him and tells him that it's already too late.
    • Secondly, his appearance (pictured above.) Roger's hair is now all over the place, he has a strange, black mass covering his arm and he's crying fucking blood.
  • Zohar and her abrupt breakdown. It's jarring enough seeing her appear with most of her body covered in bandages and it only gets worse from there. After crying for a few moments over how she believes that Ogre doesn't consider her a friend anymore, she does a complete one eighty and starts screaming about how Strix was always the only one Ogre was looking out for. Arguably the scariest part about this is how her voice goes from incredibly high pitched, to deep, throaty shouting, to effectively screeching bloody murder moments before she near fatally wounds Strix. The music playing in this scene doesn't help at all, sounding like an unholy combination of chimes and white noise. What also doesn't help is how Zohar starts laughing and cheering like an ecstatic little girl after she thinks she's landed the killing blow. This whole scene makes the chances of the two girls re-conciliating rather slim.
    Zohar: Shut up! Just stop talking already...! SHUT UP!!
  • Kuon explains the true and ugly nature of EXS and what In-Births put at risk when trying to attain more power. The term "In-Birth" is pronounced similarly to "inverse" and it turns out that it wasn't just a coincidence. Recall Yuzuriha's lesson on the Hollow Night and Voids and how In-Births are created. All humans have a latent EXS within them and when a Void takes a bite out of them, their chances of recuperation depend on how much EXS is taken out of them. In-Births are created when a Void takes a non-fatal amount of EXS out, but put something foreign inside of their victim that replaces the consumed EXS. That foreign element is what triggers a successful creation of an In-Birth but it is that same foreign element that harbors something else. Kuon states that another "self" is born within an In-Birth and as someone draws more EXS to their own, that other personality grows more prominent. Kuon further explains and warns Hilda that becoming a Re-Birth is akin to turning one's body into that of a Void, and Hilda admits to feeling that she's been pursuing further thrills to sate her thirst for excitement. This uncharacteristic tendency and shifting of personalities akin to a Void is the beginning of the process of losing one's own self and letting the alternate ego take control as they seek more EXS. All of this just from gathering more EXS, it's almost unimaginable if one tries to contain the mass of EXS the Abyss lets out so it could only get worse. Once someone actually reaches the state of a Re-birth, their old and original self will cease to exist.
    • So far, only Hilda has amassed enough EXS for this to apparently become a problem.
    • This is certainly what appears to be what happened to the likes of Zohar and Roger. They both got too close to the Abyss and Zohar turned into "someone" else entirely who was fueled by her existing emotions and feelings while Roger turned into "something" else.
    • Kuon describes that every In-Birth holds a "beast" within themselves and that certainly seems to accurately describe what happened to Merkava, where his bestial instinct has melded with his human conscious. This only makes Byakuya's case even scarier to think about.
    • Kuon brings up the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to make his point. Whether or not this is alluding to something in future for Hyde is up in the air.
  • BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle reveals how an Autonomic Nerve is created, and in hindsight, it just might be the scariest thing in the game. Autonomic Nerves are created when a pre-created body is infused with a human soul, with all memory of who they were prior being erased. The idea of taking away someone's memories and soul just to turn them into a weapon is bad enough, but Vatista's number implies that over 10,000 Autonomic Nerves have been made. Even worse, the bodies seem to come with strict programming that severely limits their freedom of action. In essence, an Autonomic Nerve is a human soul sealed into an immortal body that they have very limited control over, and when the programming takes command, they have no choice but to oblige and destroy whoever it is that had the misfortune of crossing paths with them. Which, in retrospect, isn't that different a situation than Merkava's.
    • Though, this might not be the case, since in Vatista's Arcade path, Merkava refers to her as an "artificial human with an artificial soul".
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