For those who have not completed games in the Xenoblade Chronicles series, this page contains spoilers regarding the plot. Discretion is advised.
- "This is the passage of fate!"
- – Zanza
Zanza (Japanese: ザンザ; English dub: /ˈzænzə/), originally a human named Klaus (/ˈklaʊs/) and referred to by his venerators as Lord Zanza, is a main character in Xenoblade Chronicles. He existed before the creation of the game's universe. Long before the events of the game, Zanza possesses Arglas, a Giant from Bionis, who is subsequently confined by the High Entia on Prison Island. He reveals himself to be the creator of the Monado to Shulk and his party. Zanza later turns out to be the real antagonist of the game.
Zanza's appearance changes throughout both his life and the game. Chronologically speaking, he first was a human scientist. When Bionis was created, he became the titan's immortal soul, causing his appearance to match that of the god. However, when he is first met at the top of Prison Island, Zanza is in possession of Arglas' body.
After the death of Arglas, Zanza vanishes, only to reappear much later, having taken on his true form, which happens to greatly resemble Shulk. In this form, he gains wings and a revolving halo above his head. Near the end of the game, Zanza transforms into a version of Bionis, and it is in this form that he fights Shulk.
After this, his top half becomes a Mechonis-styled torso and arms while his lower half becomes a Telethia-styled set of wings, representing the fact that he has combined both the powers of Mechonis and Bionis into one being. The glowing symbols move to the tips of the tail-wings.
Possessing Arglas, Zanza appears to be somewhat granting. After Arglas' death, Zanza's voice in Shulk's head is more encouraging to violence, as when he encourages Shulk to let his anger out at the Faced Mechon. His violent side comes up again when Zanza tempts Shulk into killing Egil for all the pain the latter had caused to the people of Bionis. In his true form, Zanza displays a vain, pompous, and hypocritical persona. As a god, Zanza believes can do whatever he wants, and that others should feel grateful for their god to take action on their lives. Zanza also believes only a god (referring to himself) has the right to decide the fate of all living things.
Prior to Xenoblade Chronicles
Zanza, originally called Klaus, was once a scientist working on a project attempting to create a new universe, hoping to help mankind reach divinity. His experiment succeeded in creating a new universe, and most of all life was sucked into this new universe, including half of Klaus' body, which came to be known as Zanza, and Klaus' coworker who would become Meyneth. These two were the only beings to survive the destruction, and emerged from the endless sea of this new universe as Bionis and Mechonis, respectively.
Many years before the start of Xenoblade Chronicles, Zanza began to fear the day when his creations would leave him, since it would mean his own demise; if they departed, he would not regain the ether from the deceased denizens of Bionis. This, coupled with his growing loneliness and the fading of awareness of him among the denizens of Bionis, led Zanza to engineer a cycle of destruction and regeneration, in which all life must eventually be destroyed, then returned to him in order to be recreated. Zanza possessed the body of the giant Arglas through the Monado and used it to lead an attack on the Mechonis. He was defeated, but managed to enlist the services of Dickson, Lorithia, and Alvis as his Trinity of Disciples.
Allowing his flesh - Arglas' body - to be held inside Prison Island and his soul inside the Monado, locked in Ose Tower, Zanza rested and recovered his strength. He was awakened when the Monado was discovered by an expedition of Homs from Colony 9. He sucked their lifeforces to replenish his own, and then possessed a young boy who was among the explorers. That boy was carried off to Colony 9 by Dickson and was raised as Shulk. Zanza then lay dormant within Shulk, waiting for the day when the Monado could be wielded by Shulk so that his flesh could be released.
When Shulk's group arrives at Prison Island, the Mechon launch an attack. Zanza, in Arglas' body, makes a deal with Shulk: he will unlock the Monado's true strength if he is released from his shackles. Shulk eventually agrees and releases Zanza. However, just as Zanza appears to be back at full strength, Metal Face arrives with Face Nemesis and impales him with an Ether-destroying spear. Zanza enters a state of limbo for a very short time in which Nemesis attempts to communicate with him, but she is driven off by the party. Zanza's body is dead by this point, but his consciousness remains - he disperses into a cloud of ether, but continues to talk to Shulk as they fight the mechon.
Alvis comes to the Island a little later and talks with Zanza, suggesting that he could have stood in Zanza's place for him. Zanza remarks that he feels a storm coming, and then seems to fade.
Rebirth of Zanza
Although mentioned in passing more than once, Zanza does not reappear in person until the events at the Mechonis Core - when Shulk is shot in the back by Dickson, Zanza emerges from the boy's body, leaving Shulk unconscious. He reveals his motives for possessing Shulk, as well his desire to endlessly destroy and regenerate all life. He effortlessly defeats Egil and Yaldabaoth. He moves in to destroy the party, but Meyneth - inhabiting Fiora - unleashes her Monado and attacks Zanza. After a short fight, Zanza notices that Meyneth is not fighting at her full strength, and moves to attack Shulk, realizing he is important to her. When he tries to wipe out the party, Meyneth leaves Fiora's body and takes the full blunt of the attack, sacrificing herself for them. Zanza claims Meyneth's Monado and vanishes from the Core, teleporting to Prison Island. Here he causes it to sink inside the head of the Bionis, releasing copious amounts of ether and starting the process of turning the High Entia into Telethia. He uses the Bionis to attack the fleeing party, but Egil uses the Mechonis to defend them, and wounds the Bionis before he and the Mechonis are destroyed.
After Bionis reawakens, Zanza is not seen by the party - he is in Memory Space, having visions and contemplating the immediate past and future. However, he is unable to see beyond a certain point, where his visions cut out abruptly. He does not understand this, as possessing both Monados means he should be "one with the passage of fate". His thoughts are interrupted with the realization that Dickson and Lorithia have been defeated, and he expresses confusion over this, asking, "How can this be? Are Telethia growing weak?"
- Main article: Zanza (boss)
Once in space, the team meets Zanza in his second form, a cross between the Bionis and the Mechonis' bodies. He welcomes them, and thanks Shulk for his role in delivering the two Monados to him. Zanza offers Shulk the position of his new disciple, but Shulk turns him down. Zanza expresses regret that he must wipe out the Homs, as he had "a desire for friendship". Shulk corrects this, stating that Meyneth chose to exist alongside Shulk and his friends, growing to consider them her friends as well. Shulk also says that Zanza never wanted friends, but slaves for whose lives as food.
He talks to them for a short while longer before attacking the party. They fight his first form, then his second form. His level is listed as ???, but it is speculated that this is around level 81. His creations are level 78 on the first fight and level 80 on the second. After defeating Zanza twice Shulk gains his own Monado, to Zanza's bewilderment, and attacks once more.
After this battle Alvis speaks to Zanza, informing him that even gods are restricted by providence. Zanza sees this as a betrayal and rebukes Alvis for disobeying him. Alvis is unfazed by this, and asks Shulk to make a decision: "Does this world belong to Zanza? Or does it belong to you?" The Monado III gains a new symbol (神, kanji for god/deity), giving it the power to harm gods. Shulk rends Zanza in half, and the god is destroyed.
Alvis, the physical manifestation of the Monado, asks Shulk what he desires to do with his newfound power. Shulk ultimately wishes for a world with no need for gods, honoring Meyneth's final wish. He tosses his Monado aside, ending the need for gods and Bionis itself. The world is recreated, transformed into a state similar to how it was originally, with continents instead of titans. It is unclear how similar this universe is supposed to be to the original, but Alvis' parting words indicate an optimistic future.
|Monado Buster||Ether||3.05 - 3.25||1||Frontal Line||-||Yes (2)||-|
|Monado Eater||Ether||1.8 - 2.0||1||Frontal Arc||Removes buffs|
|Monado Brave||Status||-||-||-||Strength Up|
|Ether Field||Status||-||-||Circle around caster||Pierce||Yes (1)||-|
|Break||100%||Lock-On||0%||Physical Def. ▼||70%||Agility ▼||100%|
|Topple||100%||Bind||100%||Ether Def. ▼||70%||Aura Seal||100%|
|Daze||100%||Paralysis||100%||Strength ▼||70%||Arts Seal||100%|
Many question Zanza's motives, which, much like Dickson's, were never properly explained.
When Zanza is first introduced, in his true form, it is clear that he wishes to destroy Bionis and recreate the universe in his own image "...as he has done many times before." However, later down the line, it is revealed that this universe was created through some form of experiment, an experiment that destroyed his original universe and created the one of Bionis and Mechonis. Therefore, Zanza's original plans with his experiment and what he actually wanted in the end were two completely different things, and it is altogether possible and in fact likely that Zanza, with the above quote, was referring to the cycle of death and rebirth of the world he had put in place to maintain his existence.
On another note, Alvis insists several times that all Zanza ever desired was friendship, though this idea is never fully explored.
- "Free me, and the Monado will cut down anything you wish. Nothing but a god can stand in your way."
- "Let the shackles be released!"
- " [Jovial tone] Good. Now you feel it. Swing the blade to your heart's content!"
- "Mmm... I see a storm on the horizon."
- "Do not be surprised. Everything in this world is dictated by the passage of fate."
- "As all that exists is interconnected, time can only flow towards the inevitable."
- "That is the vision of which I, the Monado, am the origin. That which will be... will be."
- "This was all predestined. Ever since I came to reside within Shulk..."
- "First, we must eliminate my greatest obstacle -- you, Meyneth! The Mechonis!"
- "HA! Then you shall cease to exist... by the wrath of my blade!"
- "It's finished!"
- "Meaningless sentiment..."
- "It is from me that all life is born. It lives only for me. And it shall..be.. returned!"
- "[Ridiculing tone] Heh-heh! So you finally unleashed your Monado...And there was me thinking you would die with dignity..."
- "This battle is mine, Meyneth!"
- "Is that all you've got?"
- "Something wrong? ..Is this the height of your skill? You call yourself a GOD!? ...And you talk of sharing this world with ME?!"
- "Huh.....? So that's why...The dead boy is important to you..... The Homs are nothing but bacteria..clinging to my body!"
- "And who decides that, a god...Because only a god may decide. ...This world only needs one god, Meyneth. HAH! May you ROT in that shell for all eternity!!"
- "Face me like a god! ... If not, then say goodbye to your putrid FRIENDS!!"
- "Such a fool..."
- "Heh ha ha ha ha ha ha!! This is the passage of fate! [teleports to Prison Island]"
- "[Re-appears at the summit of Prison Island] Heh...let it begin...The ceremony of destruction and recreation!!"
- "Stubborn mortals...So desperate to cling to your pathetic lives...Even when there is NO HOPE FOR YOU!"
- "Don't you ever GIVE UP?!!"
- "It is from me that all life is born. It lives only for me. And it shall... be... returned!"
- "Why? Why can I not see any further? Now that I possess both Monados, I should be at one with the passage of fate. Why does the vision end here?"
- "Huh? .... So Dickson has passed...Lorithia, too. How could this be? Are Telethia growing weak? How could they be defeated by such worthless mortals??"
- "'A world that has no need for gods?' ...Heh! There is no world without a god. This world.. belongs to ME!!"
- "There is no longer any need for the life of Bionis."
- "Using one's power to change the world. That is a right possessed only by gods."
- "As I planned, the life of Bionis existed simply to serve as my vessels, [Smirks]... and my food. Bionis is nothing more... than an accumulation of their corpses and life energy."
- "[Frowns] How...unfortunate... I had a desire for friendship...but.. granting intelligence to the lives I created was a mistake. A god... should not long for friendship."
- "I will then create a new world! Just as I have done many times before!"
- "Mine is the one true Monado -- instrument of destruction... and rebirth!"
- "I shall wipe you from this world and bring forth its DEMISE!"
- "No... How can you still have visions?!"
- "You mere vessels dare to oppose the will of a god?! Then I shall obliterate everything with my unimaginable power!"
- "BEHOLD, THE TRUE FORM OF A UNITED WORLD!"
- "I cannot -- no...I will not let you live!!"
- "It's not possible! HOW can you read my movements?!"
- "YOU-ARE-ALL DOOMED!"
- "BEHOLD SUPREME POWER!"
- "Your existence cannot be permitted! I will destroy you!"
- "You cannot defy my will!"
- "YOU WILL NEVER DEFEAT ME!"
- "I am a GOD!! ALL THAT IS and shall be!! You are NOTHING!!"
- "This is the power of a god!"
- "How!? How can you have visions! You no longer possess the Monado!"
- "Can it be? A Monado?!"
- "A third Monado has appeared. How can this have happened?! You are mere mortals!"
- "[Upon defeat] It cannot be!"
- "How?! The power of a god cannot be overcome."
- "Alvis?! HOW DARE YOU DISOBEY ME!?! AGH!"
- "But that...that's impossible!"
- "[In a whisper] That....that symbol!"
- "All that I am... is fading. The memories of a god's existence, born from the chaos of creation -- It is... vanishing..."
- "Let's begin the experiment!"
- "[Crazed] Ridiculous! It's perfectly safe! We are about to bear witness to the BIRTH..of a universe!! Once, only a GOD could perform such a miracle! But today, mankind moves one step closer to the divine!!"
- In Xenoblade Chronicles 2, the Architect stated that after the experiment, Zanza became his other antithesis half. While the Architect retains his knowledge and guilt over the events and wishes to fix it, Zanza is oblivious to it and shows his darker side.
Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition
|Characters in Xenoblade Chronicles|
|Playable Characters||Dunban · Fiora · Melia · Reyn · Riki · Sharla · Shulk|
|Homs||Alvis · Dickson · Gadolt · Juju · Mumkhar · Otharon · Vangarre|
|Nopon||Chief Dunga · Oka|
|High Entia||Kallian · Lorithia · Sorean · Tyrea · Yumea|
|Machina||Egil · Linada · Miqol · Vanea|
|Gods||Meyneth · Zanza|