“Jealousy. Hate. Greed. Friends, even family members are driven to kill by such ludicrous emotions. Such emotions create fathers who try to kill their own sons to save their own flesh. As long as humans control, as long as humans dictate, as long as humans exist… this madness will never end.”
—Zephiel, to Roy in The Binding Blade.
Fire Emblem: The Blazing BladeEdit
Zephiel is the heir to the Bern throne, and the son of Queen Hellene. Zephiel is a very gifted child, and it is obvious that he will become a fine ruler of Bern. However, his spiteful and paranoid father, King Desmond, tries to stop him from taking the throne, wanting his favored daughter Guinivere's future husband to rule instead. Despite this, Zephiel and his half-sister, Guinivere, love each other dearly, but Desmond also wants to bring an end to their contact, starting with the order of killing a baby fox that Zephiel captured and gave to Guinivere as a pet.
During the game, Zephiel is almost murdered by Jaffar and Nino. However, Nino overhears his prayer asking for his family to live in happiness and that he can be accepted by his father. She relates with him due to her own struggles to be accepted by Sonia, whom she believes to be her mother. She thus refuses to kill him. Jaffar, who feels compassion towards Nino due to her saving him in the chapter "Four-Fanged Offense", disregards his orders and the two of them attempt to flee, leaving the prince only unconscious. Eliwood, Hector, and Lyn ultimately rescue Zephiel from Black Fang troops led by Ursula, who attempted to finish off the unconscious prince.
Fire Emblem: The Binding BladeEdit
Zephiel, now king of Bern, is the main antagonist of Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade. In this title, Zephiel's sanity is slipping away from him, and he seeks to rid the land of Elibe of humanity by allying himself with dragons, believing they would not repeat humanity's mistakes.
Many years after the events of Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade, Desmond attempted a second assassination by handing his son a goblet of poisoned wine; Zephiel took it under the belief that his father had finally accepted him. Zephiel fell ill from the poison, but did not die. However, with the help of his close ally Murdock, he stayed in hiding and had a false funeral arranged. When Desmond stepped up to the casket to view Zephiel's body at the funeral, Zephiel, now in a lust for revenge, rose and stabbed his father to death.
A few days later, Zephiel used the Fire Emblem to awaken the Demon Dragon Idunn. Shortly afterwards, the dragon Jahn sends an illusion of himself to confront Zephiel about his motives, and when it is revealed that they have similar goals, the two started working together. Five years after this, Zephiel ordered his army to take over the continent of Elibe.
The nomadic nation of Sacae was attacked by a force led by Brunnya and the first to fall. Next was the frigid nation of Ilia, with the Bern forces led by Murdock. Then he personally came to the nation of Lycia after Narcian's attack on the Lycia Alliance and spoke to the fatally wounded marquess of Ostia, Hector, who would die shortly after Roy and the Pheraen Army came to save him.
Zephiel later forged an alliance with the corrupted nobles of the Kingdom of Etruria, Roartz, and Arcard, and caused a rebellion there. Shortly after, Zephiel, along with Narcian, Flaer, and a reluctant Perceval, arrived at Missur castle, where Etruria's General Cecilia, leader of the Loyalists' rebellion against the Etrurian coup d'etat, was resisting the Bern forces in their efforts to seize the castle while protecting Princess Guinivere, who had earlier fled Bern in order to stop Zephiel. Due to the failure of his army in seizing the castle, Zephiel chose to personally give Cecilia the "honour" of fighting him in a one-on-one duel, easily defeating and severely wounding her. With Cecilia's defeat, his forces moved in and occupied the castle, and Guinivere was brought before Zephiel. Guinivere tried to reason with Zephiel, who in response explained his motives to free the world from the destructive nature of man and attempted to justify the slaughter of countless innocents his process entailed. Zephiel then ordered Melady to escort Guinivere back to Bern and to ensure that the Fire Emblem she carried was returned to the Shrine of Seals, and after telling Narcian to send some of his forces into the Nabata Desert to find the rumoured hidden dragon village, he departed.
Later on, the Etrurian army, now under the command of General Roy, arrived at Bern Keep, and Zephiel received the news of Murdock's death. Zephiel, knowing that he may die, ordered Brunnya to take Idunn and flee, lest they lose Idunn and the entire war be rendered pointless; he also instructed Idunn to continue their work if he falls in the upcoming battle. Roy's army soon fights its way into the throne room, unlocked by two switches and the Fire Emblem, and Roy himself confronts Zephiel.
During the confrontation, Zephiel again explains his motivation in full, stating his disgust with the treachery and immorality of humanity, his intent to give the world back to the dragons, and that the defeat of the dragons in the Scouring was a mistake he intends to correct. Roy rejects his claims, pointing out that the rule of dragons will differ little from the rule of mankind, and that he, with his faith in mankind, refuses to give in to one with no faith in his people or in himself. The two then battle each other and Zephiel is defeated. With his dying breath, he tells Roy that his will shall live on, still believing that mankind will lead themselves to ruin. Following his death and the end of the war, Guinevere becomes the queen of Bern.
He can be unlocked as a playable character in the trial maps after the game is completed 7 times.
Zephiel started out as an idealistic and talented youth wanting nothing more than his parents to reconcile and peace in the world.
Zephiel would later become twisted from his father's abuse and his mother's unintentional abuse of him. This caused him to view most humans as malevolent beings, believing that non-human races would not perform the same mistakes as humanity. In the DLC Rogues & Redeemers 2, he envies Yarne's taguel status and wished that he had been born a "decent" species.
It is said by Guinivere that Zephiel was never the same after his father's attempted poisoning of him and subsequent death by Zephiel.
Sword - A
*Enemy only, joins unequipped
- The Liberator
- King of Bern. Once a kindhearted boy who became disillusioned with humanity. Wants his world to be ruled by dragons. Appears in Fire Emblem : The Binding Blade.
As an EnemyEdit
Chapter 9: Part 2 - Nobility and VanityEdit
|Eckesachs||400||16||1||Inflicts Def-4 on foes within 2 spaces through their next actions at the start of each turn.||✯✯✯✯✯|
|Name||SP Cost||Effects||Charge Cost||Rarity|
|Retribution||100||Grants bonus to damage dealt equal to 30% of damaged suffered.||3||✯✯✯|
|Reprisal||200||Grants bonus to damage dealt equal to 30% of damaged suffered.||2||✯✯✯✯|
|Life and Death 1||50||Grants Atk/Spd+3. Inflicts Def/Res-3.||✯✯✯|
|Life and Death 2||100 (Required: Life and Death 1)||Grants Atk/Spd+4. Inflicts Def/Res-4.||✯✯✯✯|
|Life and Death 3||200 (Required: Life and Death 2)||Grants Atk/Spd+5. Inflicts Def/Res-5.||✯✯✯✯✯|
|Wary Fighter 1||60||Prevents follow-up attacks in combat from unit and foes if unit's HP ≥ 90%.||-|
|Wary Fighter 2||120 (Required:|
Wary Fighter 1)
|Prevents follow-up attacks i combat from unit and foes if unit's HP ≥ 70%.||-|
|Wary Fighter 3||240 (Required:|
Wary Fighter 2)
|Prevents follow-up attacks in combat from unit and foes if unit's HP ≥ 50%.||✯✯✯✯|
“...So you have defeated me... But remember... My will shall never die... As long as humans retain control, madness will persist...”
—Zephiel's death quote in The Binding Blade.
—Zephiel's death quote in The Blazing Blade.
Zephiel makes his first appearance in person in Volume 6 after defeating Cecilia, where he engages Al in a duel. Al is nearly defeated, until he touches the Fire Emblem and promotes to a Dragon Lord, and nearly defeats Zephiel until the Fire Emblem leaves his possession. After the battle Zephiel regains the Fire Emblem and figures out that Al is the son of Hartmut and Militha, a Dragon, who, along with Al, was sealed by Hartmut to hide that fact. Zephiel later appears at the final battle with Roy. This battle is slightly different, as Zephiel starts with the Eckesachs and Sword of Seals, which he uses to seal Al again. Al then partially escapes and distracts Zephiel enough for Roy to get the Sword of Seals and kill him.
Several times in the manga, Guinivere remembers Zephiel as a kindhearted boy, and even remembers a scene that took place in The Blazing Blade, when Zephiel gave her a baby fox.
- On the official Japanese website for Nintendo, Zephiel won 29th place out of 80 in the character popularity poll for Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade. The male-female vote ratio is 5:1. The voter comments seem to generally focus on him being a powerful antagonist the player must face and his traumatic backstory.
- The "Choose Your Legends" event of Fire Emblem Heroes revealed that his Binding Blade incarnation was 274th place, while his Blazing Blade incarnation was 627th place out of 791, with 808 and 104 votes respectively. This makes his latter self the lowest scoring character of the Blazing Blade portion.
- Like many characters in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade, Zephiel seems to be a revisitation of a character from Archanea, in this case Book 2 Hardin. Both start out as wise and benevolent allies to the protagonist who seem to have a bright future ahead as a ruler, yet turn out to be brutal tyrants because they were unloved (Hardin by his wife, Zephiel by his father), their loved ones even fooling them at one point (Nyna by proposing to Hardin due to Boah's advice and Desmond pretending to reconcile with Zephiel before his murder attempt). Hardin and Zephiel both seem to be the same age (Late 20s or early 30s) when encountered as bosses, are connected to the Nyna Archetype, have the same gold streak in their armor, are in the game's best class, Zephiel even had glowing red eyes in some pictures like corrupted Hardin, and both finally die in a chapter with hordes of Hero reinforcements. Additionally, they both wield Legendary Weapons that at least appear to be Lances and are closely associated with their kingdom (Gradivus, one of house Archanea's Three Regalia and Eckesachs, a blade that can only be wielded by Bern's King)
- However, there are prominent differences; Even in death Zephiel was steadfast in his belief that humans would lead themselves to ruin, while Hardin returned to his old self before dying. Hardin has a connection to Marth, the main character of his respective game, while Zephiel's connections are to Eliwood, the father of the main character of his respective game, and Hardin uses Lances while Zephiel prefers swords (Although Eckesachs does appear to be a Gradivus-like lance before mechanically morphing into a sword)
- Zephiel is shown in Hasha no Tsurugi  as having the Anima affinity, unlike the game showing no affinity.
- In Hasha no Tsurugi, the special attack that Zephiel uses together with his sword Eckesachs is named Vassilios Dione (王者の劫渦), with the name of the attack meaning "Kingdom of the Goddess"; and the kanji of the name meaning the "Coercing Vortex of the King".
- Zephiel shares his English voice actor in Fire Emblem Heroes, Jamieson Price, with Hawkeye and Virion.
- In Fire Emblem Heroes, Zephiel's Grand Hero Battle map in based on a portion of The Binding Blade Chapter 22.