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Zero (Drakengard) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Zero Drakengard character Zero DG3 official concept art.jpg Official artwork by Kimihiko Fujisaka First game Drakengard 3 (2013) Created by Taro Yoko Designed by Kimihiko Fujisaka Voiced by (English) Tara Platt[1] Voiced by (Japanese) Maaya Uchida[1] Zero (ゼロ Zero?) is the main protagonist and playable character of the 2013 action role-playing game Drakengard 3, the third main entry in the Drakengard series, developed by Access Games and published by Square Enix. She is also featured in the prequel manga Drag-on Dragoon 3: Utahime Five and the arcade game Lord of Vermilion III. Zero is an Intoner, one of a race of god-like beings who control magic through their singing abilities. In trying to destroy the flower which gave birth to her powers and tried to use her to destroy humanity, she sets out to kill her "sisters", clones spawned by the flower to carry out its mission. Zero was crafted by Taro Yoko and designed by Kimihiko Fujisaka. Yoko created her as an unusual type of protagonist that had not been featured very often in games. Fujisaka crafted her to emulate the dark tones of the series, although he also added features to create a feminine vibe, such as the flower in her eye. Despite being criticized for her characterization and personality, she has also been praised for her interactions with the other characters and for standing out among characters within the genre. Fans of the Drakengard series in Japan have also received her positively. Contents [hide] 1 Creation and design 2 Appearances 3 Reception 4 References 4.1 Game quotes Creation and design[edit] Zero was conceived by Taro Yoko, the director of Drakengard 3. While conceiving her, Yoko thought it would be interesting to do a character who had worked in a brothel, as the concept had not been often explored and the Drakengard series offered an opportunity for such a protagonist to be created.[2] One of the earlier ideas for Zero's role in the game was to have her as a schoolgirl with a cellphone in a contemporary setting, but this was quickly decided against.[3] Eventually, Yoko decided to create more female characters for Zero to interact with: one of the reasons behind this was that all other possible choices for the game had been rejected.[4][5] Her number-based name, along with the names of all her sisters, were meant to make it easier for players to identify and distinguish them.[6] Zero was designed by Kimihiko Fujisaka, a designer who had worked on each entry in the Drakengard series. His original design was meant to emulate her status as a god-like being, but as the game's atmosphere was finalized, Fujisaka settled on her final design, which took direct influence from the game atmosphere, which was the main reason behind adding her prosthetic arm.[4] She originally had no flower in her design, but Fujisaka wanted to add an aspect of femininity to her appearance. The decision to place it in her eye was to add originality to the character: while the game's producer Takamata Shiba originally fearing it would clash with the game's atmosphere, Yoko eventually approved the design.[6] After Zero was finalized, Yoko decided on more female characters, and told Fujisaka to "think Puella Magi Madoka Magica" while designing them.[4] Her design, along with the rest of the main characters, was inspired by modern styles and fashion in contrast to the "medieval" inspiration of previous games.[7] Appearances[edit] In Zero's prequel novella, "A Rain to End and a Flower to Begin", it is revealed that Zero was abused by her mother and sold into prostitution. Eventually escaping, she grew to live by killing and stealing, with the killing eventually becoming an unconscious instinct. Eventually, she was weakened by a deadly disease and was caught and imprisoned, dying from her illness there.[8] Upon dying, she was revived by a magical flower which wished to use her as an instrument for destroying mankind. Upon realizing this, Zero tried to kill herself, but the flower kept her alive, and spawned five clones as a safety measure: these clones were Zero's "sisters", who eventually took control of the land from the native warlords. Eventually, Zero decides to kill her sisters, then herself to rid the world of the flower.[q 1] By the events of Drakengard 3, Zero had forged a partnership with the dragon Michael: as dragons are the only beings that can destroy Intoners, Michael would help Zero kill her sisters, then kill her to finish off the flower.[q 2] Their first attempt to take down all the Intoners ends in disaster, with Zero losing her arm and Michael being wounded and forced to reincarnate as the child dragon Mikhail. During their second attempt, they attack each one individually: after killing one, Zero takes on their Disciple, a servant created to magnify the Intoners' powers, who each help in battle and act as a personal harem.[9] Before facing One, Zero reverts her disciples to their original bird forms, releasing them from their servitude.[q 3] During the battle, both One and Mikhail is killed, then Zero is killed by a male clone of One created as a fail-safe in the event of Zero's victory.[q 4] Around this central timeline, various "branches" appear, caused by "singularities", namely Zero, her sisters and the Disciples.[q 5] During her progression through these branches, Zero is monitored by Accord, one of a race called Recorders charged with monitoring all of time and all alternate timelines created by singularities such as Zero.[q 6] In the second branch, while going to kill her sister Three, Zero witnesses the flower driving her sisters insane, with Three dying from poisons in the forest and One being murdered by an unhinged Two. In the ensuing battle, the Disciples and Two are killed, then Mikhail is poisoned. Zero uses the flower to form a "pact" with Mikhail, resurrecting him.[q 7] In the third branch, Zero's Disciples are killed when Two self-destructs, and Mikhail regresses to a childlike form incapable of properly defending her. When Mikhail is killed by One's dragon, Zero and One do battle and One is killed. Mentally unbalanced by the event, Zero sets off to find another dragon, but it is hinted that she fails.[q 8] In the fourth branch, Zero manages to kill all of her sisters and absorb their powers, managing to take down One with help from Accord. After absorbing all their powers, she and Mikhail are transported to another world and Mikhail destroys the monster Zero transforms into. With this, the flower's magic is sealed away, although Accord speculates that Zero might have survived and would reappear in some form.[q 9] Zero has also appeared in the prequel manga Drag-On Dragoon 3: Utahime Five, which is told from the point of view of the other Intoners.[10] Beyond Drakengard 3, both Zero had her dragon Mikhail appeared in the second sequel to the arcade game Lord of Vermilion.[11] Reception[edit] "Without so much as a halfway rationalized vengeance on her mind, Zero just fills the screen with chaos and screams and bloodstains. And as she does so, Drakengard 3 spits in the face of Nathan Drake, Bayonetta, Kratos, and every other brooding antihero and bad-girl heroine who killed dozens of people and came out of it with a charismatic stride or some tragic justification. Even when the game's uncovers her deeper motives, there's no excuse for what Zero does." Todd Ciolek from Anime News Network[12] Zero has received a mixed to positive reaction from western video game critics. GamesRadar's Becky Cunningham praised Tara Platt's performance in the role, and that her relationship with Mikhail helped humanize her.[13] GameSpot's Heidi Kemps found Zero entertaining despite her negative portrayal, enjoying the points where she critiqued the game and finding that she "related to her as the game progressed, which is not something I typically feel for antihero characters."[14] Eurogamer's Chris Schilling found that Zero's presence turned the game into "a jet-black comedy", while finding her honesty about her motives appealing and being reminded of Jordan Belfort: while both unlikable characters, there was "something magnetic about their horribleness."[15] RPGFan's Derek Heemsbergen referred to Zero as "foul-mouthed butcher", although he was generally positive about her story and her interactions with Mikhail and the disciples, calling it "strange and often hilarious".[16] Anime News Network's Todd Ciolek was fairly non-committal about his opinion of the character, instead describing Zero as a conscious mockery of standard action-game protagonists, referring to her as "murderous, foul-mouthed, impulsive, abusive, and all but impossible to like."[12] In contrast, Kimberley Wallace of Game Informer was not as enthusiastic, saying that while Zero had some good one-liners, "the better efforts are buried in a lot of bad party banter."[17] IGN's Meghan Sullivan was also fairly negative, saying that Zero's character, interactions and motivation were badly let down by poor writing.[18] USGamer's Kat Bailey was generally unenthusiastic about Zero's general attitude and portrayal, saying that she was "characterized in large part by her apparent love of killing and her aggressive bitchiness toward her companion dragon".[19] The character has also been positively received by series fans in Japan. In a popularity contest organized by Dengeki for the characters of Drakengard 3, Zero came in as the most popular character of the game, with her dragon Mikhail coming second.[20] In the 2014 Dengeki PlayStation Awards, Zero was placed as the fourth best character of 2013.[21] References[edit] ^ Jump up to: a b "Voices of Zero". Behind the Voice Actors. Archived from the original on 2014-05-29. Retrieved 2014-05-29. Jump up ^ Spencer (2014 2014-05-29). "Drakengard Had Multiple Endings Because Taro Yoko Was Told There Wouldn’t Be A Sequel". Siliconera. Archived from the original on 2014 2014-05-29. Retrieved 2014-05-29. Jump up ^ "結果的に新情報満載 『ドラッグ オン ドラグーン3』開発者インタビュー". Famitsu. 2013-04-04. Retrieved 2013-12-10. ^ Jump up to: a b c "『ドラッグ オン ドラグーン3』キャラデザ担当の藤坂公彦氏と柴貴正Pのロングインタビューをお届け". Famitsu. 2013-09-02. Retrieved 2013-12-12. Jump up ^ Corriae, Alexa Ray (2014-05-20). "Drakengard 3 director discuss finding beauty in a bloody story". Polygon. Retrieved 2014-05-21. ^ Jump up to: a b Sato (April 5, 2013). "Drakengard 3 Producer And Creative Director Explain How The Game Came To Be". Siliconera. Retrieved 09-10-2013. Jump up ^ Square Enix (2014-04-09). "Drakengard 3 - Kimihiko Fujisaka Interview". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-04-13. Jump up ^ "ドラッグ オン ドラグーン3 | SQUARE ENIX". Archived from the original on 2013-11-04. Retrieved 2013-07-04. Jump up ^ Sato (2013-05-14). "Drakengard 3′s Lead Character Is Rather Promiscuous". Siliconera. Retrieved 09-10-2013. Jump up ^ Nagashima, Emi (w), Isii (p). Drag-on Dragoon: Utahime Five 18 (April 25, 2014), Gangan Comics Jump up ^ Eugene (2014-03-05). "Drakengard 3′s Zero Is Also Showing Up In Square Enix’s Lord Of Vermilion III". Siliconera. Retrieved 2014-03-28. ^ Jump up to: a b Ciolek, Todd (2014-05-22). "Drakengard 3 review". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2014-05-23. Jump up ^ Cunnginham, Becky (2014-05-20). "Drakengard 3 Review". GamesRadar. Retrieved 2014-05-20. Jump up ^ Kemps, Heidi (2014-05-27). "Drakengard 3 Review". Gamespot. Retrieved 2014-05-29. Jump up ^ Schilling, Chris (2014-05-29). "Drakengard 3 review". Eurogamer. Retrieved 2014-05-29. Jump up ^ Heemsbergen, Derek (2014-05-30). "Review - Drakengard 3". RPGFan. Archived from the original on 2014-05-31. Retrieved 2014-05-30. Jump up ^ Wallace, Kimberley (2014-05-20). "Drakengard 3: Soulless Blood Splatter". Game Informer. Retrieved 2014-05-20. Jump up ^ Sullivan, Meghan (2014-05-20). "Drakengard 3 review". IGN. Retrieved 2014-05-21. Jump up ^ Bailey, Kat (2014-05-20). "Drakengard 3 PS3 Review: The Gods Must Be Crazy". USGamer. Retrieved 2014-05-30. Jump up ^ "『ドラッグ オン ドラグーン3』キャラ人気投票の途中結果発表(1月26日締め切り)。フォウ&デカートがゼロを抑えて大金星!?【電撃DOD3】". Dengeki Online. 2014-01-16. Retrieved 2014-02-28. Jump up ^ Dengeki PlayStation (2014-03-25). "『電撃PlayStationアワード2013』の結果を発表! 『電撃プレイステーション 20周年企画』もスタート!!" [The results of the "Dengeki PlayStation Awards 2014" announced! Also "20th Anniversary of Dengeki PlayStation" also starting!]. Dengeki Online. Archived from the original on 2014-03-30. Retrieved 2014-03-30. Game quotes[edit] Access Games (2014-05-20). Drakengard 3. PlayStation 3. Square Enix. Jump up ^ Zero: The first time I saw this flower... was the day I died. Now I'm just a corpse being kept alive by the flower's magic. [...] This flower is a calamity that threatens the entire world. It's growing, feeding off me. Eventually it's going to consume me entirely, and once that happens? Once it's fully grown? It's going to destroy everything. [...] When I realized that I was infected with a flower that was going to end the world, I tried to kill myself. Well, technically I was already dead, but, yeah. Anyway, I tried to rip the damn thing out. But, in the end, I just made things worse. The flower freaked out. Started sprouting these... children. Five little girls, one after another. They burst out of me and ran off before I could blink. [...] But you wanna know the best part? After a while, my "sisters" started fighting for peace. They come from a flower that's gonna end the world, and they fight for PEACE? ..Hilarious. Anyway, I made my choice. I decided to kill my sisters, and then destroy the flower. (Branch D, Verse 7) Jump up ^ One: Intoners offer only pestilence to this world. Someday, they will be the disease that brings ruin to all human life. That's why you're trying to kill us: to save the world. And once you succeed in killing your sisters... You're going to finish the job... and kill yourself. And you'll use that dragon to do it. (Branch C, Verse 5) Jump up ^ Zero: It's unavoidable. Disciples can't remain in human form without an Intoner's power. Sooner or later, you'll disappear. So before that happens... I'm giving you your old forms back. (Branch A, Chapter 5, Verse 3) Jump up ^ One: Brother. I'm One's brother. / Zero: Brother? That's...impossible... / One: You wouldn't know. You only had your five sisters. But in the same way you "created" your sisters... Your sister One created me. I was a failsafe in case you managed to kill her. I was her final weapon. (Branch A, Chapter 5, Verse 4) Jump up ^ Accord: In the flow of post-Cataclysm history, if a unique set of conditions known as "singularities" come together, splits occur in time, resulting in the multiple world divergence phenomenon. (Branch B, Verse 1) Jump up ^ Zero: What the hell are you, anyway? / Accord: We're Recorders. [...] It's our job to record world events from the ancient past to the distant future. You know the Old World you people are always going on about? Well, I was sent by folks from there. (Branch B, Chapter 2, Lost Verse 2) Jump up ^ Accord: By utilizing the reprogramming function of the flower, the singularity known as Zero has created a new concept known as a pact. I do not know how this will affect the future. However, I will continue to observe events as they unfold. (Branch B, Ending B) Jump up ^ Accord: The Intoner Zero completed her objective. However, the dragon Mikhail has died and Zero's mental health is in a rather alarming state. I'm afraid there's little chance of finding a solution in this timeline. As such, I recommend sealing off this branch. (Branch C, Ending C) Jump up ^ Accord: The Intoners have been sealed off in another world. The threat of the flower has been extinguished from this branch. However, the possibility exists that this seal could unravel itself at some time or location in the future. Until then, our recording efforts will continue. Oh. And a personal addendum regarding my observational target, Zero. Perhaps this is beyond my functional requirements as a recorder, but I cannot shake the feeling that somehow, somewhere, Zero is still alive. And that, someday... Someday, she and I will see each other again. Crazy, I know. Call it a hunch. (Branch D, The Final Song)

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