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Zero (X era)

From Mega Man Wiki
Character Info
MMX - Zero Art.png
Artwork from Mega Man X
General information
Appearances:Mega Man Games:
Mega Man X, Mega Man X2, Mega Man X3, Mega Man 2: The Power Fighters, Mega Man X4, Mega Man Xtreme, Mega Man X5, Mega Man Xtreme 2, Mega Man X6, Mega Man X7, Mega Man X: Command Mission, Mega Man X8, Mega Man X DiVE

Other Games:
Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, TEPPEN

Other Media:
Archie Comics

Related Numbers:Serial Number: DWN-∞
Voice Info
Voice (JP):Ryōtarō Okiayu
Voice (EN):Wayne Doster (X4), Jack Merluzzi (X7), Lucas Gilbertson (X:CM-MHX), Johnny Yong Bosch (MvC3-TEPPEN)

Zero (ゼロ) is a protagonist and playable character first appearing in the X era. He is a Reploid[note 1] created long ago by Dr. Wily, who defies his destiny as a bringer of destruction to become a Maverick Hunter and a good friend of X and Axl. Zero also stars in his own series of games during the Zero era, and later returns as the Biometal Model Z in the ZX era.

Zero is distinguished by his red, white, and yellow armor, horned helmet, long blond hair, and use of a beam saber called the Z-Saber.

In the Games

Classic era

Mega Man 2: The Power Fighters

Mega Man 2: The Power Fighters is allegedly set in an alternate timeline, making the canon status of its plot debatable.[1] In Bass's ending of the game, Dr. Wily shows Bass the plans for Zero as his ultimate creation, using an energy source more powerful than Bassnium and intended to replace him in the future. Bass ridicules the idea upon seeing Zero's plans, referring to him as a "girlie-looking" robot. Dr. Wily insists however that Zero is special and will help him achieve world domination, along with another "project" of his, likely referring to the Maverick Virus.

X era

The exact circumstances of Zero's creation are only described in supplementary resources and non-video game material. As Zero came close to completion, Dr. Wily found a flaw in his cognitive program that made him violently uncontrollable. The Maverick Virus would hopefully pacify Zero and let Wily control him, but it still wasn't complete yet.[2] Running out of time at the end of his life, Wily chose to seal Zero inside a hidden capsule much like X, hoping the Maverick Virus would force Zero to fulfill his mission: to destroy X to spite his nemesis Dr. Light, and to spread the Maverick Virus to ensure Wily's influence in the chaos of the future.[3][4]

A flashback in Mega Man X4 shows the events of Zero's awakening in 21XX. After somehow exiting his capsule, Zero began slaughtering any Reploids that entered the laboratory, including Garma's unit of the Maverick Hunters. This drew the attention of Sigma, who went to fight Zero alone in close combat. Zero overpowered Sigma, but before he could finish him, a "W" symbol appeared on his helmet gem as the Maverick Virus took hold.[2] Sigma seized the opportunity to shatter the gem and knock Zero unconscious, ordering the Hunters to retrieve his body so Dr. Cain could study him.

In the aftermath, Zero had become pacified with only fleeting dreams of his rampage. He joined the Maverick Hunters as a prestigious SA-Class Hunter working in the 17th Unit, where he served under Sigma and began befriending X. However, Zero's battle with Sigma was the beginning of a larger conflict, as Sigma too was exposed to the Maverick Virus and thus began plotting a rebellion that would lead to the Maverick Wars.[2]

Mega Man X

X posing with Zero, from Mega Man X.

Zero officially debuted in the original Mega Man X as a supporting character and ally of X within the Maverick Hunters. He is first seen in the Highway Stage, saving X from Vile by blasting the arm off Vile's Ride Armor and forcing him to retreat. Zero assures X that he should not expect to beat a ruthless machine like Vile yet, but also tells X that he can become stronger if he keeps honing his abilities. He then departs to scout for information on Sigma's fortress, encouraging X and intending to meet with him later.

Once X defeats the eight ex-Maverick Hunter bosses, Zero meets with X to tell him the fortress's coordinates so they can face Sigma. In Sigma Stage 1, Zero decides to split up, distracting the "main defense force" so that X can slip in more easily. X and Zero reunite just as Vile appears, and Zero intends to take him on alone. However, when he does not return, X follows to find that Zero has been imprisoned by Vile. X still fails to defeat Vile's Ride Armor and is paralyzed again, so Zero breaks free from his cage to grab the Ride Armor and launch a powerful attack that destroys the Ride Armor but badly damages Zero.

After X destroys Vile, he finds Zero split in half at the waist. Zero uses his last words either to acknowledge X's power if he has already acquired the First Armor's Arm Parts, or to warn him of Sigma and give him his own arm cannon (an identical upgrade to the Arm Parts) if he has not. Zero then perishes.

Mega Man X2

Mega Man X2 reveals that after Sigma's defeat, Dr. Cain managed to salvage Zero's control chip. However, he was incapable of creating a new body for Zero, as his mysterious physiology was too unique for him to replicate. Zero's control chip was thus stored in Hunter Base.

Six months after Zero's death, the X-Hunters contact the Maverick Hunters to reveal they are in possession of Zero's reconstructed body in thirds: Agile has his lower body, Violen has his upper body, and Serges has his head.[note 2] They challenge X to a series of duels over Zero's parts. If X fails to defeat all three before they escape, they storm Hunter Base and steal Zero's control chip from Dr. Cain by force.

Zero finally reappears in X-Hunter Stage 4, though the events differ based on the player's success:

  • If X collected all three of Zero's parts, a Fake Zero appears at Sigma's side. The real Zero then arrives, having been rebuilt by Dr. Cain, and destroys the Fake Zero for X.[note 3]
  • If X failed to collect all of Zero's parts, Zero appears at Sigma's side as a Maverick, having been reassembled by the X-Hunters. X is then forced to fight Zero as a boss, who returns to his senses upon being defeated.

Either way, Zero encourages X to pursue Sigma while he destroys the Central Computer, punching a hole in the floor to show him the way. Once X defeats the Sigma Virus, Sigma expresses confusion as to why Zero did not go Maverick, mentioning that he is "the last of the Doctor's creations." The Central Computer then detonates, and X and Zero reunite, victorious, on a cliff by the sea.

Zero era

Some time at the end of the X era, Zero seals himself away. He is awakened 100 years later in the Zero era, having lost most of his memories, where he must face new threats and relearn about his past role in the Elf Wars, a major conflict that took place between the X era and Zero era.

Behind the Scenes

Developer Commentary

"Usually, I would be the one doing the main characters, and Kaji would take care of the sub characters. This time, however, we decided to change things up a bit. I asked Kaji to do Mega Man, and I made the sub character, Zero, my project. I'm sure I've said this in many different places in more than a few different ways, but I really wanted Zero to be a playable character. I wanted to offer a 'different Mega Man', and possibly a more hardcore game." - (Keiji Inafune)[5]
"I wanted to make the character's personality a little more hardcore too, and I knew that if I was working from the design of the traditional Mega Man, I'd be stuck in that whole 'nice guy' image. The whole time I was designing Zero, I was seeing him as the 'new Mega Man'. But I didn't bring that up when I went to submit our designs to my boss. I brought out the X that Kaji designed and said, 'Here's the new Mega Man!' My boss had a very positive reaction to X, and when I brought out the design for Zero, I simply said, '... and this is the sub character.' I figured that would ensure a less critical analysis of Zero and, as a result, I got an immediate OK in the form of, 'Red, huh? Hmm... yeah, that's nice.' (laugh)" - (Keiji Inafune)[5]
"Zero died in 'X1', but Inafune just came in one day saying, 'Don't you think it'd be a shame to let Zero stay dead?' So we brought him back to life. It was that simple. Not only did we bring Zero back to life for no other reason than because we could, we brought him back in pieces. I don't know what I was thinking, to tell you the truth." - (Yoshihisa Tsuda)[5]
"The only illustrations I did for 'X3' were X, the new Zero, Vile MK-II, and Sigma. I was especially possessive of Zero. I just kept saying, 'He's my character,' and I didn't let anyone else touch him. (laugh)" - (Keiji Inafune)[5]


  1. Though Zero was technically created before the Reploids, he is consistently referred to and treated as one (e.g. Mega Man X Legacy Collection Gallery) due to his comparable mental capacity.
  2. The American translation of X2 fails to reveal how the X-Hunters obtained Zero's parts; the Japanese version mentions that Serges constructed them. This fuels the connection between Serges and Dr. Wily, as Zero's new design is identical to the silhouette shown by Wily in Mega Man 2: The Power Fighters.
  3. Zero being reassembled by Dr. Cain appears to be the canon scenario, as the X5 opening depicts Zero facing the Fake Zero.


  1. "Ultimate Justice on Parallel Earths". The Reploid Research Lavatory. March 2011.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "There Were Originally 24 Maverick Hunter Units, and Other Mega Man X Tidbits (Updated)", The Mega Man Network. Feb. 12, 2018.
  3. "Does the Rockman Zero Collection Storyline Explain Everything?", The Mega Man Network. Apr. 9, 2010.
  4. Mega Man X: Command Mission Official Strategy Guide. BradyGames. Sept. 15, 2004. p. 78.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 MM25: Mega Man & Mega Man X Official Complete Works. 2013.

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