| Spoiler Alert: This page contains major spoilers from the events of the games. |
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|“||I cannot allow myself to be defeated by someone who treads so thoughtlessly upon the happiness of women. Your life ends here.||”|
—Kesselring, preparing to fight against Rance.
|Race||Dark Lord, Kalar (former)|
|Age / Birth||3065~ / SS0???|
|Ht. / Wt.||172cm / 61kg|
|Status||Demonic Blood Soul|
|Class||Elite Dark Lord|
|Affiliation||Kayblis Faction, Monster Realm|
|Skill levels||Magic Lv2 (?), Sword Combat Lv1 (?)|
|Appeared in||Kichikuou Rance, Persiom, Rance X|
|Mentioned in||Rance VI|
Prior to becoming a Dark Lord, Kesselring was a talented warrior of the all-female Kalar race. In the year SS0420, he was approached by the then-current Demon King Ssulal. Unusually weak for a Demon King, Ssulal desired to create a powerful Dark Lord who would serve as her protector, and requested for Kesselring to fulfill the role. Sympathizing with the Demon King, Kesselring agreed, promising to become a knight who would protect Ssulal at all costs. Upon becoming a Dark Lord, Kesselring’s body became male, seemingly as a result of his strong desire to keep his new master safe.
As a Dark Lord, Kesselring worked closely under Ssulal, swiftly eliminating any and all potential threats to her rule when in battle and serving as a faithful attendant and advisor when outside of it. Kesselring’s devotion to Ssulal, combined with his naturally excellent strength, allowed him to quickly become recognized as one of the Four Elite Dark Lords, the four most powerful servants of the Demon King, earning him a considerable amount of respect from the rest of the Demon King’s followers in the process. With a host of incredible powers at his disposal, Kesselring was able to easily topple all that stood in his way, earning him the epithet of “Lord of the Night” from allies and enemies alike.
Following Ssulal’s death in the year SS0500, Kesselring was thrown into a depressed state. Believing himself to have failed his vow to protect his master no matter what, Kesselring declared that he would become an ally to all women in Ssulal’s honor. From that moment forward, Kesselring devoted himself to protecting the happiness of women everywhere, gallantly taking every unfortunate woman he came across into his care, offering them refuge and hospitality within his castle until they became able to stand on their own. One such woman, the princess of a fallen nation named Sharon, became so grateful for Kesseling’s salvation that she requested to become his servant to continue being with him. Interested only in her continued happiness, Kesselring accepted Sharon’s request and, after having her work under him as a maid for some time, eventually made her into his Apostle and lover.
Over time, many other women followed Sharon’s example and chose to abandon their previous lives to become Kesselring’s Apostle and be with him forever. By the end of the GI Era, Kesselring had amassed a following of seven devoted Apostle maids, all of whom pledged their eternal and undying love to him. Kesselring enjoyed a peaceful life with his Apostles, all the while continuing to rescue and protect abused women.
In the year GI1015, Demon King Gi named Kurusu Miki, a Human girl from an Alternate Dimension, as his successor, kidnapping her from her home to pass on his blood to her. Before Miki was able to fully awaken to the power of the Demon King, however, she was rescued by her boyfriend Ogawa Kentarou, who was able to temporarily stop her transformation through the use of Hirami Lemons. With Gi having allowed himself to be killed by Kentarou, and Miki refusing to accept the position of Demon King, the Monster Realm was left without a leader and thrown into a state of civil war. The war was fought between Hornet, Gi's daughter who desired to follow through with her father’s wishes and embrace Miki as the new leader of Monsterkind, and Kayblis, who desired to become the Demon King himself and wage war against humanity. Kesselring, believing it to be the duty of monsters to punish humanity for its selfish actions, chose to ally himself with Kayblis despite vastly preferring Hornet over him as an individual. Due to his already high standing within the Monster Realm, Kesselring was made the second-in-command of the Kayblis Faction, leading the group during the majority of its battles against the Hornet Faction due to Kayblis’ refusal to participate in combat unless victory was assured for him.
In the year LP0002, Kayblis ordered Kesselring to send his Apostles in pursuit of Miki, intending to kill her and absorb her powers as Demon King. While Kesselring’s Apostles succeeded in capturing Miki and Kentarou, the two were eventually able to escape from the maids’ clutches and live another day.
Kesselring was briefly mentioned during the events of Rance VI by the Dark Sword Chaos, who listed him alongside the other Four Elite Dark Lords when describing the nature of the group to the ignorant warrior Rance.
Sometime following the Collapse of Zeth in the year LP0004, Kesselring came across the former Four Lord of Zeth Nagi su Ragarl at the bottom of a cliff in the Monster Realm. Nagi had wandered into the Monster Realm crazed and unstable in a reckless attempt to quickly amass more power for herself, only to be attacked and critically injured by a large group of monsters and lose all memories of her identity in the process. Recognizing her as a mistreated woman, Kesselring took Nagi into his care, where she began working under him as a maid-in-training. Nagi quickly revealed herself to possess a high aptitude as a maid, prompting Kesselring to begin to consider allowing her to become his Apostle. Before he was able to do so, however, Nagi regained her forgotten memories and immediately fled from his castle, once again in search of a way to grow stronger.
|This section contains spoilers from a game that has not been translated to English yet.|
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In the year LP0007, the Kayblis Faction was finally able to land a decisive victory over the Hornet Faction, causing Kayblis to be recognized as ruler of all of monsterkind. Immediately after becoming the ruler of the Monster Realm, Kayblis ordered an invasion into the Human Realm using the entirety of the Monster Army’s forces, sparking the beginning of the 2nd Dark Lord War. During the war, Kesselring was tasked with invading the nation of Helman through its border with the Monster Realm to the west.Early on into the invasion, Kesselring came across an abandoned estate known as Bram Castle deep within the Transylvania Forest located along Helman’s border with the Monster Realm, which he immediately assumed temporary residence in alongside his maids. Disinterested in fighting humanity, Kesselring left the vast majority of the war effort in the hands of LeMay, the Great Monster General assigned to assist him in leading the Helman invasion, and only periodically entered the battlefield himself. In spite of this, Kesselring continued to exert his authority as second-in-command of the Kayblis Faction over LeMay, firmly rejecting his constant proposals to bomb human settlements as being “barbaric”, keeping the bloodthirsty monster somewhat under control in the process.
Though his appearances in combat were infrequent, Kesselring proved to be an extremely deadly threat to the forces of the Helman Army, launching direct attacks on the Helman capital of Lang Bau in the middle of the night and effortlessly slaughtering all who attempted to oppose him. In addition, Kesselring also began spreading chupacabra, a powerful curse spread from his bite that transforms its victim into a mindless and obedient zombie slave, across key points of the enemy army's defenses, forcing Helman soldiers to turn their weapons towards their own allies. During the day, Kesselring slept inside of a coffin situated in the depths of Bram Castle, leaving the fight against humanity in the hands of his Apostles until he awakened.
During the events of Rance X, the forces of the Human Realm were formally united under Rance to create the United Human Army. Due to possessing Chaos, one of the only weapons capable of penetrating the Invincibility Field that protects Dark Lords from all forms of damage, Rance was able to form as specialized squad made up of humanity’s finest warriors designed to fight against and defeat each of the Dark Lords invading human territories. Titled the Dark Lord Extermination Squad, this group allowed humanity to begin to mount a more effective resistance against the Monster Army, providing hope in a seemingly hopeless situation.Sometime after the Dark Lord Extermination Squad’s victory against Babolat, the other Dark Lord charged with invading Helman, Kesselring succeeded in infecting Rolex Gadras, general of the Helman 5th Army and the nation's strongest warrior, with chupacabra while he was asleep in his private quarters. With Rolex removed from the battlefield and placed under quarantine, the Helman Army suffered a major loss in terms of both fighting strength and morale. After a month of investigation, Hubert Lipton, the supreme commander of the Helman Army, was able to uncover the location of Kesselring's castle, allowing the Dark Lord Extermination Squad to begin operations to defeat him.
Upon beginning his pursuit of Kesselring, Rance was warned by Satella, a Dark Lord of the Hornet Faction who had agreed to cooperate with humanity, that the Elite Dark Lord became nearly invincible during the night, and advised to only attempt to fight him during the day. Taking heed of this warning, Rance chose to travel through Transylvania Forest at nighttime, rationalizing that the trip through the dense forest would be long enough that they would reach Kesselring's castle by the dawn of the next day.
As the group trekked closer towards Bram Castle, they were discovered by Kesselring's Apostles, who immediately took action to protect their sleeping master from the approaching threat by sending two senior maids, Barbara and Paleloa, to intercept them. While the pair were defeated, they were rescued at the last moment by Elsill, the head of the Apostle maids, allowing them to regroup and plan out a new method of attack. Cautious of the Dark Lord Extermination Squad's strength, the maids activated several Magical statues that Kesselring had placed throughout the castle which cast an illusionary Curse over the building's interior that prevented intruders from reaching their master's bedchamber, hoping that it would be enough to restrain their enemies until nightfall.
After arriving at Bram Castle and discovering the illusion that had been cast upon it, Rance quickly ordered Pastel Kalar, the queen of the kalar and a skilled practitioner of curse magic, to break it. While Pastel claimed that she would be able to deactivate the spell, she noted that the process would likely take several hours, and told the rest of the group to seek out and destroy the statues responsible for it to enable her to complete it more quickly. While in the process of destroying the statues, the party fought and defeated all five of Kesselring's most senior maids, who were forced to withdraw from battle after sustaining heavy wounds.With the assistance of the rest of the party, Pastel eventually succeeded in lifting the curse, allowing them barely over a half hour to find and defeat Kesselring before sunset. Just as the group began to approach the Elite Dark Lord's chamber, however, they were attacked by Lilim and Alcarria, Kesselring's two youngest Apostles. In spite of being instructed by their seniors to find a safe place to hide, the duo's shared desire to protect their master caused them to attempt to battle against the much stronger intruders. While the younger maids were swiftly defeated, Rance, who had grown agitated over not being able to have sex with any of their superiors, wasted several minutes restraining and raping them, causing the already limited time he had left to reach Kesselring to become even shorter.
Moments after reaching the coffin in which Kesselring slept, Rance was approached by Varen, the youngest of the maids who had been inducted so recently that she had not yet been converted into an Apostle. Too weak to mount any kind of resistance against him, Varen begged Rance not to kill her master, and stated that she would do anything to convince him to stop. Rance, never one to pass up the opportunity to have sex with a woman, lied to the young maid and claimed that he would not lay a hand on Kesselring if she gave up her body to him, believing himself to have enough time to kill the sleeping Dark Lord afterwards.
After Rance finished having sex with her, Varen revealed to him that Kesselring actually rose from sleep a half hour before sunset, and that the moment they had spent together was enough to give him the time needed to wake up. As if awoken by those very words, Kesselring emerged from his coffin and immediately began staring coldly at Rance. Sensing the Dark Lord's overwhelming power through his gaze alone, Rance ordered his allies to retreat rather than even attempt to fight against him. Kesselring dove at Rance with terrifying speed less than a second after he began his escape, but was narrowly blocked by Amitos Armitage, the general of the Helman 1st Army who had accompanied the group on the mission. Rather than pursue him further, Kesselring allowed Rance and his allies to exit his castle to be with Varen, who had been cursed to die upon losing her virginity, during her final moments. As Varen passed on peacefully in his embrace, Kesselring, filled with quiet rage, vowed revenge against Rance.
Upon returning to Lang Bau, Amitos, who had contracted chupacabra as a result of receiving Kesselring's attack, was placed under quarantine, crippling Helman's military even further. Enraged by both his failure and Amitos' zombification, Rance attempted to launch a second raid on Bram Castle a few days later, only to be forced to retreat before even reaching its entrance due to Transylvania Forest having been reinforced with many more monsters. His pride wounded by his repeated losses, Rance began taking out his frustration on his allies, most notably his slaves Sill Plain and Sheila Helman. Rance's abusive behavior towards the two women was covertly observed by Kesselring, who had infiltrated Lang Bau in the form of fog to evaluate him. Disgusted, Kesselring revealed himself to the trio and declared Rance to be unworthy of either Sill or Sheila, abducting them both to his castle while leaving Rance alive to stew in misery over his failures.
With Sheila, the president of Helman, kidnapped, the already dire war situation grew even more bleak as what was left of the country's forces continued to crumble against the Monster Army. Thrown into a panic by Sill and Sheila's disappearance, Rance attempted to launch a third attack on Bram Castle, but was refused by his comrades, who believed themselves to be lacking the resources necessary to do so. His anger and worry overpowering his sense of reason, Rance attempted to raid the castle by himself, only to be confronted by Kesselring, who had chosen to patrol the castle’s perimeter in the place of the traumatized and exhausted Alcarria, just as he had begun moving through Transylvania Forest.
While Rance fought relentlessly against Kesselring, he found himself to be completely outclassed by the Elite Dark Lord and was quickly and thoroughly defeated. After beating him within an inch of his life, Kesselring granted Rance the opportunity to flee from to safety, believing that allowing him to live with the knowledge of his own weakness would be a greater punishment than killing him. Despite initially disregarding this offer, Rance was eventually pushed into accepting it by Kentou Kanami, who had successfully managed to track down his location just in time to tell him that Sill wouldn't want him to throw his life away. Humiliated, heavily wounded and miserable, Rance returned to Lang Bau to recover.
At Lang Bau, Rance was greeted by his daughter Reset Kalar, who was brought from Rance Castle to Helman to return him to his senses. Reset slapped Rance on the head, causing him to regain control over his raging emotions through the healing power of her mysterious Hand of Klausen. With his ability to reason restored, Rance spent the following night staring out across a nearby lake in an effort to think of a new plan of attack against Kesselring. Just as he began to give up any hope of defeating his seemingly unbeatable enemy, Rance was approached by Sill and Sheila, who revealed that they were allowed to leave Kesselring’s castle after telling him that they were unhappy there, and had spent the last several nights sneaking through Transylvania Forest to return to him. With the two kidnapped women safely at his side once again, Rance's confidence was restored, allowing him the clarity needed to concoct a new plan.
The next day, Rance revealed to the rest of his allies that Sill and Sheila's escape from Kesselring had exposed the Elite Dark Lord's weakness to him. Recognizing Kesselring's desire to bring happiness to all unfortunate women that approached him as an exploitable flaw, Rance devised a plan that involved manipulating it to humanity's advantage. If an unfortunate woman were to infiltrate Bram Castle for long enough to gain the trust of both Kesselring and his Apostles, Rance believed they would be able to incapacitate the maids and disable the illusionary curse before the Dark Lord Extermination Squad arrived in the morning, allowing it more than enough time to defeat Kesselring in his weakened state. With Hubert agreeing to have the Helman Army fully back the plan, Rance is left to decide whether to utilize a single female spy or several.
If Rance chooses to send several spies to infiltrate Kesselring's castle, he orders Hubert to gather as many miserable women as he can possibly find and send them en masse into Transylvania Forest. As a result of the countless tragedies that the country experienced under the oppressive rule of Stessel Romanov, the Helman Army is able to find an abundant number of women who have experienced great hardship in their lives, allowing each of them refuge into Bram Castle.
After only a few days, Kesselring is approached by Elsill, who reveals that he has taken in 2,317 new maids into his care and that the time and resources needed to manage all of them has rendered his Apostles incapable of deploying onto the battlefield. Elsill voices her suspicion that the castle’s sudden surge in residents was part of a trap set by the Helman Army, and asks for her master’s permission to expel them. Without any hesitation, Kesselring admits that he had known from the beginning that several of the women were spies sent by the Helman Army, but states plainly that, as many of them genuinely had come from miserable backgrounds, he had no intention of abandoning them. While Elsill initially attempts to argue against these words, she is quickly forced to relent by Sharon, who reminds her that it was the same unbending kindness that their master currently displayed that allowed them to live happily at his side. Aware of his folly but refusing to go back on it, Kesselring prepares himself for the coming battle with Rance.
On the morning of the attack, the Dark Lord Extermination Squad arrive at Bram Castle, where they are greeted and allowed entry by several of their spies, who inform them that they had successfully dismantled the castle’s traps and incapacitated the Apostle maids. With no obstacles in their way, the group is able to enter Kesselring’s bedchamber to find the Dark Lord awake and waiting for them. Eerily calm in spite of his circumstances, Kesselring asks Rance how he feels knowing that he was only able to achieve victory by taking advantage of the misery of thousands of women. Without even a hint of remorse, Rance responds by saying that such knowledge made him feel powerful, causing Kesselring to descend into a rage and attack him.After an intense battle, Rance succeeds in landing a critical blow on Kesselring in his weakened state. Using the last of his power, Kesselring transforms his body into fog to escape from the fray and collect his sleeping Apostles, bringing them to the terrace of Bram Castle to say goodbye to them in his final moments. Awakened from sensing their master’s approaching death, the maids immediately surround him, with the tearful Lilim offering to return the blood that he had given her to keep him alive. While Kesselring discourages this, saying that his wounds are too grievous for him to have any chance of recovering from, his seven Apostles choose to give their blood to him nonetheless to die alongside him. One by one, Kesselring bids farewell to each of his maids before they sacrifice themselves to keep him alive for slightly longer. After all of his Apostles have given their lives for him, Kesselring spends his final moments reflecting on his life, satisfied with how he had chosen to live it, before being reduced to a Demonic Blood Soul.
While initially frightened at being in such close proximity to a Dark Lord, Peruelé quickly grows accustomed to the lavish lifestyle that comes with being one of Kesselring's maids, and happily spends the following few days eating decadent meals while feigning friendships with her new colleagues to shirk her responsibilities onto them. After only a handful of weeks, Peruelé asks Kesselring to be made into an Apostle, realizing that doing so would allow her to become much stronger without requiring her to put forth any kind of effort, to which he obliges.
If Rance chooses to send only one spy, he will deliberate which of the various Helmanian women that he is acquainted with to use before deciding rather arbitrarily on Sheila's personal maid Peruelé Kalette. While both Sheila and Peruelé herself object to this decision, believing it to be too dangerous, Rance refuses to change his mind and sends Peruelé into Transylvania Forest alone. Quickly deciding that her own survival was more important to her than her country's, Peruelé attempts to exit from the forest and flee from Helman, but soon finds herself lost among the dense trees. Cold, hungry and with nowhere to go, Peruelé falls asleep muttering to herself about how miserable she is, which inadvertently attracts the attention of Kesselring's Apostles, who happened to have been patrolling nearby. Believing Peruelé to be the perfect candidate to become a new maid, the Apostles transport her sleeping body to Bram Castle, where she is accepted with open arms into Kesselring's care.
Shortly after becoming an Apostle, Peruelé is covertly approached by Freya Idun, the leader of the Dark Wings, a league of assassins under the employ of the Helman Army, who informs her that the Dark Lord Extermination Squad will launch its attack on Bram Castle the next morning and to prepare accordingly. Having completely forgotten about her supposed mission in the time since she was first assigned it, Peruelé is left to choose whether to allow humanity a chance at defeating its monster invaders or to forsake it and continue living extravagantly with Kesselring. While initially fully intending to simply abandon humanity for her own interests, reflecting in particular on how much better Kesselring treats her than Rance ever did, Peruelé eventually becomes conflicted after her mind lingers on thoughts of Sheila, who continued to love and support her no matter how selfishly she acted.
If Peruelé chooses to follow through with her mission, she traps Kesselring's other Apostles in a room that she had filled with noxious gasses and disables the various traps laid out across the castle before allowing the Dark Lord Extermination Squad entry into it the following morning, allowing them to move through the building without issue. Upon arriving at Kesselring's chamber, the group is shocked to discover that he was awakened by the noise of their entry and ready to fight. Before beginning his attack, Kesselring notices Peruelé's presence among the party and reveals that he had known of her traitorous intentions from the beginning but chose to disregard them due to his belief that she genuinely deserved a better life.
After a difficult battle, Kesselring is eventually fatally stabbed by Rance. In his final moments, he chooses to smile sincerely at Peruelé, telling her that he didn't care what happened to himself so long as she was happy. Following Kesselring's defeat, his Apostles are gathered together and tied up by Rance, who demands that they serve under him in the absence of their master. While the maids initially refuse this request, they are soon pushed into compliance by Peruelé, who reveals that she had collected Kesselring's demonic blood soul after his death and is only willing to give it to them under the condition that they fight for humanity and agree to never take revenge against her. Upon giving Kesselring's blood soul to his Apostles, Rance tells them that they have permission to resurrect their fallen master in one hundred years, after he himself has died and can no longer claim them as his own.
If Peruelé chooses to betray humanity, she will reveal the Dark Lord Extermination Squad's plan to Kesselring, allowing him to prepare a counter against the attack. The next morning, Peruelé allows the Dark Lord Extermination Squad entry into the castle and guides them into a room filled with the same noxious gasses that she was expected to use against Kesselring's Apostles. While the majority of the Dark Lord Extermination Squad is killed while unconscious, both Sheila and Sill are ordered to be kept alive by Kesselring. With Rance dead, humanity quickly falls to the monster forces and any guilt that may have lingered within Peruelé over her actions is eventually forgotten across a eternity of personal bliss. As this outcome leads to a game over, it is considered to be non-canon.
If Rance manages to defeat Kesselring during the battle against him while Sill and Sheila are kidnapped, he will narrowly land a lethal blow on the Dark Lord before being killed himself, reducing Kesselring to a demonic blood soul in the process. Overflowing with rage and adrenaline from the battle, Rance charges through Transylvania Forest and Bram Castle by himself, instantly defeating all that attempts to impede him. After finally finding the room where the two captured women were being kept, Rance returns to his normal state, not remembering anything he had done after defeating Kesselring.
At the beginning of the operation to defeat Kesselring, Rance has the option of beginning the expedition through Transylvania Forest during the daytime, causing his party to arrive at Bram Castle at night. Awake and at his full power, Kesselring challenges the group at the castle’s entrance in the place of his maids, leading to an incredibly intense battle. If the Dark Lord Extermination Squad succeeds in defeating Kesselring, he will be killed by Rance and reduced to a pile of ashes and a demonic blood soul. Following their master’s unexpected death, Kesselring’s eight maids emerge from the castle in a panic. Unable to pose any kind of threat to the man who defeated Kesselring, the maids are left at Rance’s mercy, who demands that they become his personal harem. Disgusted by this offer, Elsill prepares to lead the other maids in group suicide but is stopped by Sharon, who persuades her to agree to Rance’s demand under the condition that they be allowed to keep Kesselring’s remains. Willing as always to do anything for the opportunity to have sex with more women, Rance accepts, causing all eight maids to begin working at Rance Castle.If all of Kesselring’s maids are recruited into the Dark Lord Extermination Squad, Sharon will ask Rance for permission to perform a ritual to revive their master. While Rance initially refuses, he is eventually persuaded to agree after learning that Kesselring was previously a kalar and had a chance of being resurrected as a woman. Using a special room that they had prepared for the ceremony, the maids slit their wrists over a coffin filled with Kesselring’s ashes and blood soul, causing him to return to life in a female form. Despite being somewhat humiliated at having been resurrected by the very same person who killed her, Kesselring is thankful to Rance for keeping her maids safe and allowing her to live again and agrees to serve under him, though not without first warning that she would re-assume her male form and betray him the instant that she deemed him to be a menace.
As a member of the Dark Lord Extermination Squad, Kesselring lends her great power to assist in defeating the Monster Army on the battlefield and enjoys living peacefully with her maids off of it. Still dubious of Rance’s character, Kesselring approaches numerous women inside of Rance Castle to ask them their opinion of him. Kesselring receives a wide range of responses, with some women, such as Calory Mate and Caloria Cricket telling stories of how he rescued them from terrible circumstances and allowed them to live new and happy lives, and others, such as Pastel Kalar and Atago McCart, speaking with utter contempt about how he made their lives miserable. From these results, Kesselring determines that, while Rance is a careless person who prioritizes his own pleasure above others, he is not inherently malicious, causing her to declare him to possess “the cruelest form of innocence”.
If the Dark Lord Galtia is also recruited into the Dark Lord Extermination Squad, he and Kesselring will meet in private on the anniversary of Ssulal’s death to reminisce about their departed master.
If Kesselring has not been defeated prior to beginning the "Breakthrough" ending route, he will be called to the Monster Realm by Kayblis to block the Dark Lord Extermination Squad's charge toward the Dark Lord Camilla's Castle to prevent them from interfering with her birthday celebration. Though incentivized with the promise that he would have any wish granted if he succeeded in destroying the invading humans, Kesselring had no intention of asking for anything, claiming that allowing Hornet and her allies to receive a dignified death at his hands was reward enough. Despite fighting at his full power and catching the forces of the Human Army off guard by transforming himself into fog and ambushing them in a forest clearing, Kesselring is defeated and reduced to a demonic blood soul, allowing the group to continue forward towards Kayblis' location.
Kesselring does not appear or get mentioned at any point throughout Rance X: Part 2, suggesting that he was canonically not revived. As the circumstances regarding his death are unclear, however, the status of both his demonic blood soul and Apostles are unknown.
During the events of the non-canonical Kichikuou Rance, Kesselring assists the rest of the Kayblis Faction in decisively defeating Hornet and seizing control of the Monster Realm. Throughout the conflict, Kesselring makes multiple attempts at convincing Hornet to surrender peacefully, hoping that doing so would spare her from Kayblis’ wrath. He is firmly refused each time in spite of his efforts, forcing him to continue fighting against her.
After declaring war on the Human Realm, Kayblis orders Kesselring to begin attacking human territories but does not give him any specific direction on how to go about doing so. Rather than follow a conventional warpath, Kesselring chooses to fly directly towards Leazas Castle from the Monster Realm’s border with the Magic Nation of Zeth, stopping sporadically over various cities to rescue any women that he happens to observe getting abused within them. When felled in battle, Kesselring’s ashes will be retrieved by his Apostles, who perform a ritual to resurrect him, allowing him to continue to act no matter how many times he is defeated.
If Rance asks either Satella or Meglass for information on how to permanently defeat Kesselring, they will inform him that the ritual used to revive him requires an enchanted coffin located in the depths of his castle, and that destroying it would prevent him from returning to life. With this knowledge, Rance gains the option of infiltrating Kesselring’s castle while he is away from it attacking human cities. Upon arriving at the castle, Rance will begin searching throughout it for Kesselring's coffin, taking time to rape every maid that he encounters while doing so. Detecting an intruder in his estate, Kesselring hurriedly begins rushing back towards the Monster Realm, but is continually delayed after becoming sidetracked by helping various troubled women.
If Kesselring is a great enough distance from his castle when Rance sneaks inside of it, he will arrive too late to stop the young king from destroying his coffin, causing him to attack him in a blind rage. Upon being permanently defeated, Kesselring’s blood soul will be surrounded by his grieving maids, who despair over not being able to return him to life. Following this, Rance has the option of either allowing Kesselring’s Apostles to remain in the castle with his blood soul or to attempt to forcefully abduct them. If Rance chooses to try and abduct the maids, they will each throw themselves off of the castle’s balcony in a dying protest, causing Rance to feel somewhat guilty for his actions. If Rance allows them to remain with their master’s blood soul, they will immediately huddle around it, determined to devote the rest of their lives toward keeping it safe.
If Nagi is not recruited into Leazas’ forces following its conquest of Zeth, she will wander into the Monster Realm and begin fighting through hordes of monsters to increase her strength. If Kesselring is not defeated before a certain amount of time passes, a heavily-injured Nagi will eventually stumble upon his castle and fall unconscious at its entrance. Her body is discovered by Varen, who immediately informs Kesselring about it, prompting him to take Nagi into his care. Amnesiac from her severe wounds, Nagi begins working under Kesselring as a maid and living a peaceful existence entirely unlike her previous life, but is not transformed into an Apostle due to his concerns about doing so while a desire to fight still lingers in her heart. Nagi’s memories eventually return to her after reuniting with Rance while he infiltrates Kesselring’s castle, causing her to instantly abandon her life as a maid and return to her quest to grow stronger.
If Kesselring is defeated before a certain amount of time passes after humanity enters into war with the Monster Realm, his blood soul will be collected and absorbed by his fellow Elite Dark Lord Silky Littleraisin in order to increase her power for her approaching battle against Kayblis. This event will happen regardless of whether or not Rance allowed Kesselring’s Apostles to continue protecting his blood soul.
Personality and Appearance
Kesselring has the appearance of a debonair gentleman of average height with a lean build, flowing pale blonde hair and a light, immaculately-kept beard. As a former kalar, he possesses both an elongated pair of ears and a blue-colored forehead crystal, traits that are otherwise only seen in women. While Kesselring is relatively humanoid in appearance, he has an unnaturally pale complexion, along with a strange blood red coloration in both his eyes and hands, overall making his status as a supernatural entity obvious. Kesselring's clothing consists of an exquisite black cape with golden rose-shaped fasteners draped over a white coat with dark purple lining and gold embroidery, an open-collared white blouse, white pants and a small pair of glasses.
When reverted into a female form, Kesselring becomes a beautiful woman with a statuesque figure and short, wavy blue hair, overall causing her to resemble a kalar much more strongly. She also possesses a slightly darker complexion and lighter-colored eyes than her male form, causing her to have a somewhat more natural-looking appearance. Kesselring's clothing remains largely the same while female, with the additions of a purple corset worn under her blouse and a small black ribbon worn around her neck. Curiously, Kesselring does not wear glasses when in this form.
Kesselring's appearance is generally similar in Kichikuou Rance, though he possesses a much more natural-looking skin tone and lacks the red discoloration on his hands and eyes, instead possessing long red nails on each of his fingers and dark red irises. In addition, his hair is a much darker shade of blonde and his forehead crystal is colored green, a color never seen on any kalar. His clothing is also slightly different, consisting of a black vest worn over a maroon-colored dress shirt, a black and red cape, black pants and a white cravat.
A suave, intelligent and courtly individual, Kesselring carries himself with a composed elegance at all times. Contrary to the tremendous level of power that he possesses, he is regarded as one of the most merciful Dark Lords, and generally avoids taking part in conflict unless he believes it to be his duty to do so; preferring to instead spend his days living in peaceful opulence inside of his castle. Despite this, however, Kesselring is by no means passive, and will immediately take action against those that he believes to be deserving of his wrath with a truly terrifying amount of speed and precision. In these instances, Kesselring will occasionally utilize his merciful nature to instill fear and humiliation in his enemies by choosing to spare them while they are on the verge of death in order to emphasize the overwhelming difference in power that he holds over them. For these reasons, he commands perhaps the highest amount of overall respect among his fellow Dark Lords, with even the otherwise aloof Camilla maintaining a favorable opinion of him.
Kesselring is most notable for his intense dedication toward protecting the health and wellness of women. From the beginning of the NC Era onwards, Kesselring made it his personal policy to never turn away from a woman in need, offering shelter and hospitality within his castle to all unfortunate women who happen to cross his or his Apostles’ paths. While Kesselring allows his guests to remain in his care for as long as they please, he does not force them to continue living with him, and is perfectly willing to allow them to leave should they desire to. As all of these women come from traumatic backgrounds, however, many of them are charmed by his kind behavior and choose to stay by his side, with several working as his personal maids as a show of gratitude. Eight women in particular developed such an astounding level of devotion towards Kesselring that they pledged to serve under him as Apostles in order to be able to be with him for eternity. Kesselring desires nothing more than to see these women be happy, and as such is more than willing to comply with anything they request of him.
Though exceedingly admirable, Kesselring's unflinching dedication to protecting abused women also serves as one of his few weaknesses, as he refuses to compromise his beliefs even when doing so could save his own life. This was best seen when he allowed several unfortunate women of the Human Army residence in his castle despite being aware that there were several spies among them seeking to sabotage him, dooming himself and his Apostles in the process.
While compassionate towards women, Kesselring holds nothing but contempt for humanity as a whole. Having witnessed the cruelty that mankind is capable of countless times while rescuing the women who suffered as a result of it, he has determined human beings to be lowly and despicable creatures that are both incapable and undeserving of coexisting with monsterkind. This belief is what compelled him to side with Kayblis during the War of the Factions, as he found Hornet's decision to continue upholding her father's policy of allowing humans to live free from the influence of monsters to be unacceptable.
Kesselring's allegiance to the Kayblis Faction was seen as a major betrayal by the members of the Hornet Faction, with Silky going so far as to declare him to be a hypocrite for claiming to be a protector of women despite cooperating with a group that will bring unimaginable misery to the lives of millions of women if it succeeded at accomplishing its goals and Satella bitterly referring to him as a "smug, self-important old man" for similar reasons. In spite of this animosity, Kesselring maintained his usual courteousness around the women of the Hornet Faction throughout the factional war, and always made an effort to persuade them into surrendering nonviolently when he encountered them on the battlefield in order to avoid having to hurt them, albeit to little success.
As he has lived as both a man and a woman, Kesselring is almost completely indifferent to his apparent gender. While he has spent the majority of his millennia-long life in a male form, this is merely because he believes it to project a more intimidating aura than his female one. Upon being revived in a female body, Kesselring adjusts to the change immediately and without issue, noting simply that it had been a long time since she had last been a woman.
A being of absolute power, Kesselring has made full use of his tremendous potential across his long life in order to become a figure who is both feared and respected by all of monsterkind. As a member of the Four Elite Dark Lords, he is recognized as one of the strongest denizens of the Monster Realm and, by extension, one of the most powerful beings on the Continent. With a Level Cap of 212, the fourth-highest of any Dark Lord active during the LP era, and a current Level of 207, he has attained capabilities far beyond nearly all of his peers, and is considered to be second only to Kayblis in terms of overall strength among the Four Elite Dark Lords.
Kesselring's obscene power radiates from his body at all times in the form of an aura of intense fear, which causes ordinary humans to die and elite warriors such as Rance to be paralyzed from suffocating terror when in his presence. This power magnifies even further with the setting of the sun, to the point where Satella bluntly declared him to be invincible when fought at nighttime. The inverse of this is also true, however, meaning that Kesselring's strength wanes significantly when exposed to direct sunlight, placing him at a disadvantage when fighting during the day.
In combat, Kesselring overwhelms his foes with a vast array of powerful abilities that are entirely unique to him. His primary method of fighting is to elongate and harden his fingernails to become as sharp as blades in order to rend through the flesh of his opponents. Possessing the Sword Combat Lv1 Skill Level, he is described as moving with the instinctive killing intent of an assassin, making his attacks very fast and difficult to predict.
In addition to his skills in close combat, Kesselring possesses the Magic Lv2 skill level, which grants him a wide range of potent magical techniques. His most frequently utilized ability allows him to transform himself into a cloud of fog, enabling him to move swiftly and silently across great distances while also perfectly concealing his presence. Kesselring's fog form also has high application in battle, causing enemy attacks to phase harmlessly through him and providing him with a quick means of escape when he is backed into a corner.
Another of Kesselring's most prominently shown powers is his ability to infect others with a disease known as chupacabra by biting their necks. Individuals infected by chupacabra become mindless husks similar to the Undead that think only of drinking blood, and will savagely attack any organic life that comes near them in order to do so. Anyone bitten by these infectees will also contract chupacabra, making it spread incredibly quickly if not properly contained. The effects of chupacabra can only be removed if Kesselring himself is defeated, making it close to impossible to cure.
Perhaps the most notable power that Kesselring possesses is his ability to perform a special ritual known as the "Sacrifice of Blood" with the assistance of his Apostles. Unlike other Dark Lords, whose bodies simply disappear upon dying, Kesselring's body is reduced to ash in addition to a demonic blood soul after he is mortally wounded. If both his ashes and blood soul are collected, placed into his coffin and mixed with the blood of his Apostles, Kesselring is able to resurrect from the dead instantaneously, allowing him to bypass the usual difficulties associated with reviving a Dark Lord. The ritual is not without its drawbacks, however, as it causes Kesselring to lose 100 levels in the process, weakening him substantially. This downside is not present in Kichikuou Rance, where in fact he is shown to become stronger with each additional revival.
Despite his proficiency with magic and status as a former kalar, Kesselring is not particularly skilled at cursecraft. While he is, with the assistance of several magical statues, capable of encasing his castle in a powerful illusion to trap intruders, he seems to have no talent for undoing curses, and could not remove the curse that had been placed on his maid Varen without first transforming her into an Apostle. This relative lack of skill was noted by Pastel Kalar while she was in the process of breaking the illusion cast on his castle, where she stated that, while very strong, the actual construction of the curse was fairly straightforward and crude.
- Kesselring came in 20th place in the "Males" category and 43rd place in the "Females" category of the Rance X Popularity Poll.
- Kesselring makes a cameo appearance in the Alicesoft game Persiom in the "Secret Photo 19" item, which depicts him in the process of erotically biting into the neck of an unknown maid.
- Kesselring is an avid practitioner of floriography, also known as the language of flowers. In conversation with Peruelé, he claims that his favorite flower is the chamomile, which in floriography is representative of showing patience and resistance in the face of adversity, tying into his compassion for women who have experienced misfortune in their lives. Kesselring also seems to have a great affinity for roses, as several of his possessions are patterned and/or scented after them.
- In the initial release of Rance X, Kesselring's profile listed him as possessing the Cursecraft Lv2 skill level. This was changed to the Sword Combat Lv1 skill in later versions of the game, likely due to it conflicting with his stated lack of skill when dealing with curse magic.
- Kesselring's appearance, personality and powers are heavily derived from various depictions of vampires across pop culture, most notably Count Dracula. Similarly, Bram Castle, his temporary place of residence throughout Rance X, is named after Bram Stoker, the author of the novel Dracula and the person credited for creating many of the central conventions of vampire fiction, while the forest the castle resides in shares its name with Transylvania, the region in which Stoker's novel takes place.
- Kesselring's name is derived from that of Albert Kesselring, a prominent German field marshal who served during the Third Reich and, similarly to Kesselring, was noted for his compassion towards his subordinates and respectfulness towards his adversaries.
- The chupacabra virus that Kesselring is capable of spreading is named after the Chupacabra, a legendary monster in American folklore that is noted for its habit of sucking the blood of livestock. The virus plays a prominent role in the third chapter of the Alicesoft game Evenicle 2, where it is identical in its symptoms and effects to its appearance in Rance X outside of its ties to Kesselring.
- Kesselring's appearance as a woman strongly resembles the character of Giselle from the Alicesoft game DiaboLiQuE.
- Both Kesselring and RedEye were considered as candidates to serve as the final boss of Rance Quest at various points during its development, but for unknown reasons were ultimately not chosen.
- Kesselring's profile in the Kichikuou Rance guide book provided him with a backstory that is entirely different from his canonical one; describing him as having been a kalar who was taken in by a nobleman and taught the ways of a gentleman before being transformed into a Dark Lord. In the Q&A section of the Rance 5D website, Orion, the Rance Series' lead artist, clarified that this nobleman was intended to be Gi, and that Kesselring's origin would likely be rewritten by the time of his canonical debut due to it making his decision to side with Kayblis over Hornet "confusing".
- Kesselring is given the nickname of "The Duke of Darkness" (闇統べる魔貴族) in the opening sequence of Rance X.
- At eight, Kesselring possesses the highest number of Apostles of any Dark Lord shown in the Rance series. This is particularly notable due to the fact that a Dark Lord's strength is said to slightly diminish with every additional Apostle they possess, further showcasing his power.
- Through the use of the "Add Additional Characters" bonus when starting a new game in Rance X, it is possible to collect all of Kesselring's maids and revive him before facing him as an enemy, making him the only Dark Lord that the player is capable of legitimately fighting against using their playable version.
- Kesselring is the only known Dark Lord to have formerly been a kalar.
|Dark Lords||Kayblis ◘ Camilla ◘ Kesselring ◘ Medusa ◘ RedEye ◘ Sieg ◘ La Saizel ◘ Lei ◘ Galtia ◘ Pi-R ◘ Kite ◘ Babolat ◘ Warg ◘ Lexington|
|Apostles||Kaybnyan ◘ Kaybwan ◘ Reincock ◘ Shichisei ◘ Sharon ◘ Paleloa ◘ Barbara ◘ Lilim ◘ Alcarria ◘ Elsill ◘ Varen ◘ Kanayo ◘ Alefgard ◘ Rona Kestina ◘ Aurora ◘ Yuki ◘ Launea ◘ Thalgo ◘ Samezan ◘ PG-7 ◘ PG-9 ◘ Lassie ◘ Atlanta ◘ Juno ◘ Flame Scrivener|
|Monster Army||Stroganoff ◘ Zedong ◘ Pizarro ◘ Joseph ◘ LeMay ◘ Muscle ◘ Apache ◘ Scholar ◘ Master Fencer ◘ King ◘ Needle ◘ Modokata ◘ Byranrose ◘ Max ◘ Abashiri|