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|“||Wicked King Rance, who's leading humanity to ruin. I, the Hero Arios, will punish you.||”|
—Arios Theoman, challenging Rance over the fate of humanity.
|Age / Birth||23 / GI0999|
|Ht. / Wt.|| 175cm / 65kg|
|Affiliation|| Free Cities Alliance, Hero System|
|Level limit|| 99|
|Skill levels|| Sword Combat Lv2|
|Appeared in|| Rance 01, Rance 03, Kichikuou Rance, Rance IX, Rance X|
|Mentioned in||Rance VI, Sengoku Rance|
Arios Theoman is a young man who served as The Continent's Guardian Hero of the World between the years of GI1012 and LP0004. While a compassionate and courageous man, Arios is notable for having nearly all of his accomplishments during his tenure as Hero get completely overshadowed by those of the warrior Rance.
Arios was born in a small and humble village located on the outskirts of the Free City of The O in the year GI0999. Arios lived an entirely ordinary life within his village until the day of his 13th birthday in the year GI1012, where his village was raided by a group of Monsters. Amidst the chaos, Arios was approached by a mysterious young boy known as Cola, who introduced himself as the servant of the Hero. Cola revealed to Arios that he was the Hero, the person blessed with the power to bring justice and peace throughout the Continent, and presented him with the Heroic Blade Escude, a legendary sword that can only be wielded by the Hero, as proof of his title. Using the powers bestowed to him as Hero, Arios was able to successfully repel the monsters and save his village.
At the urging of Cola, Arios set out into the world immediately after saving his village on a journey to spread order and virtue as the Hero. During his first years as Hero, Arios accomplished many minor heroic feats, including destroying a group of bandits, liberating a chapel from a curse and finding a rare medicinal herb.
In the year LP0001, Arios was asked to search for Hikari Mi Blanc, the daughter of a Leazas noble family who had mysteriously gone missing. Prior to completing this request, however, Arios came down with a case of severe food poisoning from eating the food from a yakiniku stand in Leazas Castle Town’s central park. The food poisoning resulted in 12 people, including Arios himself, becoming completely incapacitated, as well as two deaths. During the events of Rance 01, Arios was briefly encountered by Rance in his poisoned state while the other man was passing through the park. Arios attempted to have Rance bring him medicine to relieve his stomach pain, but was mistaken for a vagrant begging for money by Rance and quickly kicked away before he was able to properly introduce himself. By the time that Arios had recovered enough to move again, he learned that Hikari had already been found and rescued by Rance.
Following the failed rescue mission, Arios participated in the Leazas Coliseum, where he managed to reach third place in the rankings before being defeated due to being weakened by the lingering effects of his food poisoning. Despite not winning, Arios’ strength was noticed by Maris Amaryllis, the personal attendant of Princess Lia Parapara Leazas, who hired him alongside the coliseum’s champion Yulang Mirage to exterminate a group of monsters that had invaded the basement of Leazas Castle. After the duo completed this mission, Maris also tasked them with destroying a group of slave traders that had been kidnapping the daughters of various noble families across the Continent, which they also succeeded at doing.
Some time after his victory over the slave traders, Arios became one of many adventurers hired by Gazel Gode, the mayor of the Free City of Kathtom, to defeat the Four Witches who had taken control over his city. When Arios arrived at Kathtom, however, he became sidetracked with helping the townspeople resolve their personal problems, which caused him to delay his pursuit of the witches. Eventually, all four witches were successfully defeated by Rance before Arios was able to even attempt to search for them, causing his adventure in the city to be relatively uneventful.
In the year LP0002, Arios enlisted in the Leazas Liberation Army alongside countless other adventurers in order to fight against the Helman Army, which had occupied Leazas and begun to attempt to conquer the Free Cities in an event known as the 7th Helman-Leazas War. During the war's decisive Battle of The O, Arios served in the unit of Milli Yorks, where his exceptional strength and strong sense of justice allowed him to attract her attention. Despite this, Arios' contributions to the war were largely overlooked in favor of those of Rance, who, through various circumstances, became the leader of the Liberation Army and eventually led it to victory over Helman.
Shortly after the end of the war, Arios set out on another adventure in order to rescue Cola, who had been kidnapped by an unknown assailant. After rescuing Cola, Arios traveled to the Free City of Gaya in order to destroy an organization of mutants that had begun to overrun it. Almost immediately after Arios succeeded in defeating the mutants, however, the entire town of Gaya was completely crushed by the floating island of Ylapu, which had fallen to the ground as a result of the destruction of Upsilon, the Toushin responsible for its sustained flight, at the hands of Rance during the events of Rance IV. While Gaya and all of its inhabitants were completely destroyed by the crash, Arios' powers as Hero allowed him to miraculously survive.
After Gaya's destruction, Arios traveled to the Magic Nation of Zeth, where he met and befriended Urza Pranaice, one of the highest-ranking members of the non-magic user rights group the Pentagon. Arios assisted the Pentagon during the December Revolution, an ill-fated coup d'état against the nation's government that ultimately resulted in Urza, her family and their closest allies splitting off to form their own resistance organization known as Ice Flame.
In the year LP0003, Arios assisted the citizens of the Free Cities in fighting against the Empire of Buhard, a nation that had secretly formed underground and was controlled by an evil organization that intended to conquer the entire Continent. During the war with Buhard, Arios had his first formal meeting with Rance, who was serving as one of the evil organization's top executives. Arios immediately declared Rance to be a villain upon encountering him, causing him to challenge the brutal warrior to a duel. While the fight technically ended in a draw, Arios succeeded in severely injuring Rance while remaining virtually unscathed himself, causing the humiliated Rance to develop an intense grudge against Arios that would continue to persist for several years.
Eventually, the war between the Free Cities and Buhard ended after Rance betrayed the organization and killed each of his fellow executives, destroying it in the process. Following the war's end, Arios was ordered by Cola, who had grown worried that the balance of the Planner Scenario was beginning to be thrown off due to the ease at which both the 7th Helman-Leazas War and the war between the Free Cities and Buhard had been resolved, to begin spreading chaos throughout the Continent. Despite having diligently followed all of his commands prior to this, Arios refused Cola. Outraged by Arios' disobedience, Cola attempted to cause chaos by himself, but was eventually persuaded not to.
After placating Cola, Arios learned that Little Princess, the current Demon King of the era, had been sighted at Kawanakajima, the headquarters of the Continent's largest religion the AL Church. Eager to defeat her, Arios stormed the AL Church's headquarters, where he was attacked by the Dark Lords Satella and La Hawzel along with the Human warrior Ogawa Kentarou. Despite their great strength, Arios succeeded in defeating all three of his opponents, allowing him to enter the room in which Little Princess was being kept. Upon entering the room, however, Arios was shocked to find that the Demon King, who he had expected to be a terrifyingly evil person, was none other than Kurusu Miki, an innocent-looking young girl sleeping peacefully. Unable to bring himself to kill Miki, Arios abandoned his pursuit of her and left the group alone.Toward the end of LP0003, Arios returned to his home village. While he initially only intended to stop by the village as a visit before resuming his journey, Arios was shocked to discover that Nina Nirvana, his childhood friend, had spent the six years of his absence suffering from trauma-induced amnesia caused by the monster attack, and had been miserably waiting for his return. Wanting to be by Nina’s side in her time of need, Arios requested for Cola to relinquish his status as Hero from him in order to allow him to remain in his village. As Arios’ term as Hero was already due to expire in a matter of months, Cola complied with this request, removing all of the powers Arios had possessed as Hero and leaving to parts unknown with Escude in tow. Freed from his responsibilities as Hero, Arios returned to living an ordinary life as a villager to be with Nina.
Arios was briefly mentioned by Ragnarokarc Super Gandhi, the king of Zeth, during the events of Rance VI, in his speech to his subordinates Kaoru Quincy Kagura and Wichita Skate about their mission to unify humanity to fight against the monsters. In the speech, Gandhi emphasized the importance of finding out the identity of the latest Hero in time to be able aid them in uniting the world, noting their failure to do so with Arios before he lost his powers as exactly what they could not allow to happen again. Gandhi later thought about Arios again to himself upon becoming more properly acquainted with Rance during the feast celebrating the alliance between Leazas and Zeth at Parapara Fort, where he briefly speculated whether or not the selfish swordsman could have been his successor as Hero before brushing it off as an impossibility due to Rance being over 20.
Arios was again mentioned during the events of Sengoku Rance, this time by Miki while she was reminiscing about the various hardships she had experienced after becoming Demon King, where she stated that she was very scared when she was being chased by him.
By the year LP0006, Arios had completely re-acclimated himself to life as an ordinary person, and was living a relatively happy-yet-uneventful life in his village with Nina, who had steadily began recovering from her mental trauma. The two had entered into a romantic relationship with each other, and enjoyed several carefree and peaceful days together.
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Arios' likeness made a brief appearance during the events of Rance IX in the witch Miracle Tou's magical projection of the Twelve Knights, her fantasy all-male elite guard. As a member of the Twelve Knights, Miracle gave Arios the title of "Judgement", and stated that she desired to have him as part of the group more for his compelling background as a failed former Hero rather than for his actual physical abilities. Compared to the group's other members, who Rance had either forgotten or dismissed for various inane reasons, Rance flatly stated that Arios was "no good", and did not provide any further clarification for why he did not want him to be a part of it.
During the events of Rance X, Arios’ village was once again attacked by a group of monsters near the beginning of the 2nd Dark Lord War. While Arios attempted to take arms against the invaders, he found himself to be too weak to fight them off, and was forced to hide inside of a small building to survive. Arios watched in horror as his village was ravaged while he could do nothing to protect it. This despair reached its peak after he glimpsed Nina’s severed head being kicked around by two of the monsters as if it were a ball. The former Hero became overwhelmed by agony and helplessness as everything that he knew and loved was destroyed before his very eyes.
In his grief, Arios desperately prayed to the heavens to grant him the strength that he once had while he was the Hero to allow him to avenge his loved ones. Immediately after doing this, as if by miracle, Arios was approached by Cola, carrying Escude. Arios pleaded for Cola to allow him to become the Hero again, but was met with only scorn from his former servant, who claimed that he was a failure of a Hero during his time as one, and only performed minor deeds for his own self-satisfaction while ignoring his true duty of defeating the Demon King. Cola informed the despairing Arios that the war with the monsters and all of the death and destruction that had come with it was entirely the result of his failure to uphold this duty, and that it would only come to an end if the Demon King were killed.His sense of reason clouded by his boundless sorrow, Arios promised Cola that he would not allow anything to distract him from his pursuit of the Demon King. To this, Cola responded that Escude required a certain percentage of the world’s population to be wiped out in order to be able damage the Demon King, and asked Arios if he would be willing to allow innocents to die in order to accomplish his goal. While Arios was terrified after hearing these words, he agreed to them, stating that he would do whatever it took to defeat the Demon King. Pleased by this answer, Cola agreed to allow him to become the Hero once again. Cola revealed that he had brought the Holy Gal Monster Serachrolas with him, and, using her powers over time, returned Arios to the age of 19, allowing him to serve an additional year as Hero.
With his powers restored, Arios immediately slaughtered the group of monsters that had destroyed his village. As a final gesture of his love for her, Arios held a small burial for Nina among the wreckage of their village. Along with his lover’s remains, Arios buried any lingering doubt that he had in his actions. His eyes cold and his heart overflowing with sadness, Arios once again set out into the world to fulfill his duties as the Hero.Throughout the war, Arios wandered across the Continent, indiscriminately killing anything in his path, innocent and enemy alike, in order to strengthen Escude. Early on into the war, he crossed paths with Rance once again, who had taken the position of acting president of the United Human Army. Realizing that Rance’s efforts to exterminate the invading Dark Lords and defend humanity would prevent the population from decreasing enough to allow him to defeat the Demon King, Arios requested that he delay doing so, but was immediately refused. Seeing no other options, Arios drew his sword and attacked Rance. After a difficult battle, Rance successfully managed to gain the upper hand and repel Arios, but was unable to kill him due to the protection given to him by his powers as Hero. Following this defeat, Arios was mocked by Cola, who reminded him that he was quickly running out of the extra time given to him to be the Hero, causing Arios’ actions to become even more ruthless and driven out of desperation.
Arios later encountered Cecil Carna, the acting commander of the Mercenary Guild and a former comrade of his, during the war for control over the Free Cities. Cecil, who had just been released from the clutches of the monster army, was overjoyed to see Arios again, and hoped that he would be pleased to see her upholding the promise they had previously made to each other to protect the Free Cities. Instead, Arios reacted coldly to Cecil, immediately attacking her upon learning that she was assisting in preventing the global mortality rate from decreasing. His attack was narrowly intercepted by Rance, who once again fought him off, rescuing Cecil in the process.
Upon rescuing Cecil from Arios, Rance has the option of interrogating her about her connection to him, where he learns of the existence of Arios' numerous other admirers across the world. With this information, Rance gains the option of tracking down and raping two more of Arios' admirers; the AList priestess Elizabeth Des and the Devil Hecate in an attempt to have revenge against the Hero for opposing him. As Arios had long since hardened his heart by that point, however, he remains entirely indifferent to the other man’s actions.
Some time later, Arios learned that Miki, the Demon King, had been taken into the custody of the United Human Army and was currently residing inside of Rance Castle. Outraged that Rance would protect the person he believed to be responsible for all of humanity's suffering, Arios refocused his efforts from simply killing everything standing in his way to relentlessly pursuing Rance and his allies, who he deemed to be traitors to mankind.
Arios clashed with Rance a number of times following this, each time becoming more and more powerful as the global population declined. With his powers as Hero preventing him from being killed, Arios steadily became a much more difficult opponent for Rance to face off against, causing the brutal warrior to require outside assistance in order to survive their encounters. In one such clash, Arios succeeded in lethally injuring Rance forcing either Crook Mofus to use the miracle granted to her as pope or the Holy Gal Monster Wenlina to utilize her naturally incredible healing ability to revive him from the dead.
Arios faced off against Rance for a final time during the United Human Army's climatic assault on the Monster Realm, where he served as a final road block preventing Rance from reaching Kayblis, the monster army's leader. After an intense battle, Rance was finally able to decisively defeat Arios, finishing him off by launching him into a chasm using his strongest ability, the Brutal Attack. Upon landing in the chasm, Arios was informed by Cola that he had reached his deadline as Hero, and immediately had Escude and his powers taken from him. Arios pleaded Cola to allow him a time extension, who responded with mocking laughter. Cola bluntly told Arios that he had no right to be called a Hero, spitefully reminding him that he had chosen to completely ignore the war between humanity and the monsters, when the Hero was needed the most, in order to take out his personal anguish on innocents. Following this, Cola abandoned the despairing Arios alone and powerless in the monster realm, leaving his ultimate fate unknown.
If Rance allows the global mortality rate to exceed 30% during the war, Arios infiltrates Rance Castle in an attempt to kill Miki. Arios will succeed in either killing one of the Dark Lords Silky Littleraisin, La Hawzel or Warg or seriously injuring the Dark Lord Satella before being repelled. As all four of these characters appear alive and well during the events of Rance X: Part 2, however, it is assumed that this canonically did not occur. Additionally, as Crook canonically utilized her miracle in order to have an audience with the Creator God Ludo-Rathowm, it can also be assumed that Wenlina's powers were used to resurrect Rance following his fatal clash with Arios.
Arios plays a major role in the non-canon "Truth of God" ending, achieved if the global mortality rate exceeds 50% and Rance Castle was not made airborne during the final encounter with the Dark Lord RedEye, where he raids the mountain fortress that the United Human Army has taken refuge in while Rance is away from it, with the intention of killing Miki. Before he is able to do so, Arios is stopped by Urza and Kentarou. Urza makes an attempt at reasoning with Arios by reminding him of the friendship they formed during his time working alongside the Pentagon years before, but is ignored and swiftly slaughtered alongside Kentarou by the remorseless Hero.
With no one left standing in his way, Arios succeeds in finding and killing Miki, only to be immediately told by Cola that his actions were pointless, that a new Demon King had already been chosen to replace Miki, and that the Hero’s entire existence is based around nothing more than entertaining the Gods. While shocked by this revelation, Arios remains resolute, vowing to continue killing each successive Demon King for as long as it took to bring peace to the world. Deeply amused by this response, Cola reveals his true form, the 4th Class God Colas 0024, to Arios, and quips that he was beginning to sound like a true hero before instantly removing all of his powers from him and disappearing. Moments later, Arios, stunned with shock, is found and killed by an enraged Rance. Arios’ actions lead to Crook informing Rance of the true nature of the Continent and the existence of Ludo-Rathowm, prompting the brutal warrior to wage a futile war against the heavens in a reckless bid to escape from his control.
Arios makes an additional appearance during the non-canon “Demon King Kayblis” ending, achieved if Kayblis is allowed to become the Demon King and succeeds in defeating Rance. Arios appears shortly following Rance’s death, where he attempts to defeat the newly-appointed Demon King himself. Aware of the limitations of the Hero system due to his lifetime of serving the Demon King, Kayblis traps Arios within an endless stream of fire, immobilizing him and causing him to experience unbelievable amounts of pain until he eventually dies as a result of his term as Hero expiring.
In the non-canon Kichikuou Rance, set during the year LP0003, Arios appears while still being in possession of the title of Hero. At some point prior to the events of the game, he was captured and imprisoned by the Kalar in order to be used as breeding stock. If Rance enters the Kalar forests himself, he will also be captured by the all-female race, where he will meet Arios. Contrary to their relationship in the canonical timeline, the two young men get along rather well, with Rance expressing pity towards Arios, a virgin, for having to be forcefully ejaculated by the Kalar on a daily basis without ever getting to have sex with them. After Rance successfully wins the affections of the Kalar Queen Pastel Kalar, earning his and Arios' freedom in the process, the two part on good terms.
Arios makes an additional appearance in Kichikuou Rance during the "Unification" ending, obtained if Rance manages to defeat Kayblis without having full control over the entire world. With the world not completely united under Rance, tensions quickly begin to stir among the conquered nations, who begin to recognize him as a tyrant, sparking a massive rebellion. During the rebellion, Arios charges into the throne room of Leazas Castle, where he challenges Rance to a duel to determine the future of the world, with the game ending just as their battle begins, preventing the victor from being revealed.
Personality and AppearanceEdit
Arios is a young man of average height with spiky red hair and a lean muscular build. His clothing during his time as Hero consisted of gold-accented white armor worn over a blue tunic, along with a dark yellow cape. Arios is noted to be quite handsome, which was further complimented by his natural ability to attract women while he was Hero. Arios' appearance is largely the same in Kichikuou Rance, though his armor is blue-colored with a gold falcon-shaped insignia on its chest plate and his cape is white.
Befitting a Hero, Arios possesses a strong sense of justice, and is both righteous and compassionate. His compassion is incredible even when compared to other Heroes, as his refusal to kill Kurusu Miki when given the chance shows that he was willing to go against his duty of slaying the Demon King in order to protect an innocent girl. Even following the loss of his powers, Arios' continued attempts at trying to protect the weak and innocent show that this selflessness was genuine rather than simply an obligation due to being the Hero.
Despite his heroic personality, Arios is very naive and easily distracted, spending the majority of his time as Hero doing minor side quests rather than accomplishing more important goals. As a result, Rance ended up resolving most of the world's conflicts before he even knew about or was given the chance to be relevant in them.
Due to the natural charisma bestowed upon him as the Hero, Arios was very popular with women and had several girlfriends all across the world. While Arios presumably lost this ability after losing his title of Hero, he is currently living comfortably with his childhood friend, suggesting that they are in a romantic relationship together.
Arios first encountered the warrior Rance while the latter was assisting the Underground Empire of Buhard in attempting to conquer the Free Cities Alliance. Due to the nature of this meeting, Arios chose to recognize Rance as a villain and fought against him to defend the Free Cities, where he succeeded in severely damaging him. Unused to losing even slightly, Rance made the declaration that he would have his revenge against Arios by raping all of his girlfriends across the Continent. While it is unknown if Rance has accomplished or even attempted to complete this objective, his grudge against Arios seems to persist years after their encounter, as he stated that Arios was "no good" immediately upon seeing his image among Miracle Tou's projection of the Twelve Knights and did not provide a comical justification for his reasoning like he did with the other members of the group.
Despite the hostility of their relationship in canon, Rance and Arios are shown to get along quite well in Kichikuou Rance, where they serve as cellmates together during their time as prisoners in Kalar Village. This suggests that it was the circumstances of their first meeting with each other in canon that soured their relationship rather than any sort of incompatibility between their personalities. Even when on friendly terms with each other, however, Arios is still unafraid to stand against Rance after he becomes recognized as a tyrant by the rest of the world, though he makes a point of stating that he wished that he would not have to fight him.
During his time as the Hero of the System, Arios was blessed with incredible power, possessing both an enormous Level Cap of 99 and a Sword Combat Lv2 Skill Level, giving him an incredible amount of potential. While the title of Hero caused Arios to level up at a much slower rate than most other individuals, it also prevented him from ever losing Levels over time, meaning his strength would never deteriorate. These qualities allowed for Arios to be an excellent warrior who was able to severely damage Rance in a battle of swordsmanship while remaining relatively unharmed himself as well as defeat the Dark Lords Satella and La Hawzel and the very strong human swordsman Ogawa Kentarou in a three-on-one fight, both incredible feats in their own right.
Despite these great achievements, much of Arios' strength is suggested to have been the result of the special powers given to him as Hero rather than his own natural talent. After losing his title of Hero, Arios became so weak that he was unable to continue living as an adventurer, even after several months of intensive training to increase his power, suggesting that his natural level cap is quite low.
Due to having possessed a Sword Combat Lv2 skill level, Arios was able to perform a unique special move known as Falcon Set, which produced a red shockwave from his sword to attack several enemies at once. During his time in the Leazas Liberation Army, Arios used this move to defeat a large group of Helman Knights, who are well known for individually being strong enough to be a challenge to face even for a high level party. It is unknown if he still possesses this technique after losing the title of Hero.
- Arios' known girlfriends include:
- Terrasse, a 16-year-old who he met in the year GI1015.
- Lilina, a 17-year-old who he met in the year LP0001.
- Cider, an 18-year-old who he met in the year LP0002.
- Elizabeth, a 16-year-old who he met in the year LP0003.
- Nina, Arios' childhood friend whom he settled down with after retiring as an adventurer in the year LP0005.
- Interestingly, two of Arios' girlfriends, Lilina and Elizabeth, share their names with the characters of Lilina and Elizabeth Des, who appeared in the game Kichikuou Rance but have not made any canonical appearances in the series to date. Additionally, Elizabeth's age matches the age of the Kichikuou Rance character of the same name, and she began dating Arios following his adventure in the AL Church headquarters, the same location where the Kichikuou Rance Elizabeth was encountered in. Whether or not these girls are intended to be the same characters as the ones seen in Kichikuou Rance, however, is unknown.
- Arios is terrified of bees, to the point where he has never once attempted to fight a Bee Girl Gal Monster due to the great fear they inspire in him.
- Arios is largely a parody of Adol Christin, the main protagonist of the Ys series of video games, though he more broadly parodies most traditional RPG protagonists.
- He also has a similar appearance to Lars from the manga series Bastard!!
- Arios' last name is occasionally romanized as "The O-Man" by Alicesoft, suggesting that it is meant to reference his birthplace of The O.
- Besides his appearance in Kichikuou Rance, Arios has only made very small cameos throughout the series, with all of his major interactions with Rance and Kentarou happening during the unseen "missing year" of LP0003.
- Arios shares a few qualities in common with Bird Lithfie, Both are more traditionally heroic warriors with many girlfriends who serve as rivals to Rance. However, while both are presented as Rance's opposite in terms of character, Bird is revealed to be much more similar to Rance than he initially appears to be.