The Mabeasts are a major antagonistic force in the 2014 Japanese dark fantasy light novel series Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World as well as its anime television series & manga adaptations of the same name. They act as the central antagonists of the second story arc and minor antagonists in the fourth and sixth story arcs. They also appear and are mentioned in various side stories, short stories, and video games.
The term mabeast is attributed to any vicious predatory species of animal that was created by the Witch of Gluttony Daphne during the time when the Witches of Sin wandered the world. There were many species of mabeast that each varied in physical appearance and ecology. However, regardless of the species, the primary food source of the Mabeasts was magical energy, which, rather unfortunately, was found primarily in living creatures such as humans and demi-humans.
To be expected, the mabeasts were hostile to all forms of life, as their animal instincts deemed all living things as their prey. However, there were some individuals who were able to control mabeasts to a certain extent. Daphne, the creator of the mabeasts, could control them. The three Sin Archbishops of Gluttony Louis Arneb, Lye Batenkaitos, and Roy Alphard could also control mabeasts. Additionally, so could the child assassin Meili Portroute.
Alongside the numerous lesser species of mabeasts there existed five known unique mabeasts that were one of a kind and possessed eternal life. Three of these unique mabeasts, aptly referred to as the Three Great Mabeasts, were the Black Serpent, the Great Rabbit, and the White Whale. The Three Great Mabeasts were heralded as unstoppable calamities that were responsible for many massacres over the centuries.
The other two unique mabeasts were the Crimson Scorpion and the Centipede Coffin. The Coffin was only partially alive and acted as the obedient method of transportation for its creator Daphne who fuelled the mabeast with secretions from her own body. The Crimson Scorpion had the power to take the form of a human and exhibit an actual intellect whilst doing so. The Scorpion was even capable of complex feelings like love and was able to maintain its human form indefinitely, only transforming back when it was forced to.
Species of mabeasts
Snow Blights were powerful gorilla-like mabeasts that lived in snowy environments such as Elior Forest. Their bodies were almost entirely covered by white fur save for their faces, chests, and inner arms that were left bare. A snow blight's bare brown skin turned red when filled with murderous intent. They had yellow eyes and a single slightly-curved horn adorning their foreheads. They were over three times the size of regular people and were capable of taking on several armed humans with little to no effort. Like gorillas, their legs were short and stubby and their arms were thick and as large as tree trunks. They tended to operate alone rather than in groups.
Besides their incredible physical power, snow blights were skilled at using the snow in their environment. They crafted massive snow balls with astonishing speed that they used to crush their prey from afar. Snow blights were typically avoided by people due to their overwhelming power and ferocity. That being said, the Frozen Witch Emilia encountered two in Elior Forest on two separate occasions. The first one she came across was attacking a defenceless family, prompting her to step in and kill it with her fire magic. She later faced a second one that she drained the life essence of in order to protect a group of criminals.
Ulgarms were wolf-like mabeasts with brown and black hide, protruding razor-sharp fangs, a set of spikes jutting out of their backs, red eyes, and a single spike-like horn on their snouts. They worked in packs and were typically led by a giant alpha who could shapeshift into an unassuming adorable puppy capable of earth magic. The alpha ulgarms were aptly referred to as "bossgarms" by Subaru Natsuki. By biting a target, an ulgarm could infect them with a curse that could only be dispelled by a talented mage or by killing the ulgarm responsible. Upon activation, the curse would instantly transfer all of the victim's magical energy to the ulgarm regardless of the distance, instantly killing the victim and feeding the ulgarm. A pack of ulgarms acted as the central antagonists of the second story arc.
A pack of ulgarms lived inside the forest surrounding Arlam Village, although they were unable to enter the settlement due to a barrier of magical crystals around its perimeter. Meili Portroute, a young assassin who had been hired to cause chaos in the village, had the power to control mabeasts and decided to employ the assistance of the ulgarms. Meili used the disguised bossgarm to lure the village children into the woods. The servants of Lord Roswaal L. Mathers's mansion were able to save the children, but only after Subaru Natsuki was implanted with several curses. The next day, the servants once again journeyed into the forest to exterminate the mabeasts to free Natsuki from the curse, and with the help of Roswaal himself, they were successful.
Not all mabeasts belonged to a species, as there were at least five that were completely one of a kind. Each of the five known unique mabeasts were created by Daphne for a specific purpose, although what that purpose was differentiated between each mabeast. Although not an ironclad rule, the unique mabeasts tended to be more imposing than their non-unique counterparts. Three of the five unique mabeasts were known collectively as the Three Great Mabeasts and were feared around the world for their unstoppable rampages that rarely left any witnesses. Additionally, the five mabeasts were known to possess an eternal lifespan, although this may've just been a trait shared by all mabeasts. The five unique mabeasts were as follows:
- Main article: Black Serpent
One of the Three Great Mabeasts, the Black Serpent, as the name implied, was a black serpent-like predator. However, its exact physical features remain ambiguous as anyone who ever saw the Serpent perished shortly thereafter. It was considered the worst of the Three Great Mabeasts, as unlike the other two, it was almost completely uncontrollable and its actions were usually unpredictable. It secreted a venom that reportedly inflicted its victims with a hundred ailments just by touch. The ground it slivered across became infected, making it completely inhospitable to anything other than mabeasts. Its venom, if separated from the Serpent for long enough, was capable of gaining a sentience of its own.
Around three hundred years after Daphne's death, the Black Serpent was manipulated into attacking the elven village in Elior Forest by the Witch of Vanity Pandora. Pandora's power, called the Authority of Vanity, allowed her to manipulate phenomena, meaning she could indirectly control the Serpent to a certain extent. In the aftermath of its attack, a large quantity of the Serpent's venom was left frozen in the Forest which eventually emerged ninety-three years later and caused havoc before being stopped by the half-elf Emilia. Unlike the other two Great Mabeasts, the Black Serpent was created solely to kill rather than to eventually become a food source. Daphne's skewed logic was that if there were less humans, starvation rates would drop, clearly missing the point that the death she was inflicting through the Serpent was even worse than starvation itself.
The Centipede Coffin was easily the most unique of the five one of a kind mabeasts, as it was the only known mabeast that was completely incapable of thinking. The only actions the Coffin could complete were those that were mentally commanded by Daphne herself, and it had no desires to consume or anything of the sort. Unlike the other four unique mabeasts, the Centipede Coffin was not suited to combat and hunting as its sole purpose for existence was to act as a method of transportation for the Witch of Gluttony. The reason that Daphne employed the Coffin was because of her insatiable hunger. She believed that movement expended too much energy that made her hungrier, so she used the Coffin to move around. As it had no real cognizance, the Coffin was immune to the Authority of Pride used by the Witch of Pride Typhon.
Physically, the Coffin resembled a black iron maiden with purple and pink decorations. The Coffin could open and close its doors to reveal the Witch inside, who rested within the padded pink interior bound by black chains. Perhaps the most peculiar and unnerving feature of the Coffin was the set of crab-like legs that would sprout from the Coffin's base on the command of its operator. The Coffin, thanks to its legs, could move surprisingly fast. Daphne used the Coffin during her life, however the fate of the mabeast after her demise is unclear. A copy of the mabeast existed in the dream realm of the Witch of Greed Echidna where it was operated by the soul of its owner. Its primary source of sustenance were the bodily fluids that Daphne secreted including sweat, spit, and urine.
Unlike the other four unique mabeasts, the reason why Daphne created the Crimson Scorpion is currently unknown. The Scorpion was a scorpion-like mabeast with a black carapace and orange underbelly. It had the power to regenerate, project beams of light from its tail, and self-destruct certain parts of its body. It was far larger than any ordinary scorpion, having a large profile around the size of an elephant but shorter. Although not as formidable as the Three Great Mabeasts, it was more powerful than any known ordinary species of mabeast. It was also uncontrollable to the likes of Meili Portroute despite her power to control most mabeasts. Through unknown methods, the Crimson Scorpion was able to take the form of a human woman who called herself Shaula.
As Shaula, the Scorpion became the apprentice of the wise Sage Flugel. She assisted in the defeat of the Witch of Envy Satella and was tasked with overseeing her imprisonment in the following years. For four hundred years, Shaula dutifully guarded the Pleiades Watchtower that overlooked Satella's prison while awaiting her beloved master's return. Eventually, an adventurer named Subaru Natsuki, who Shaula mistook for her master, made his way into the Watchtower. Tragically, Shaula was forced to turn back into her mabeast scorpion form at which point she lost her life while battling Subaru and his friends. Notably, the Scorpion was capable of complex thoughts and emotions while in human form and felt none of its natural impulses to devour living creatures. The time that the Scorpion could stay as Shaula was seemingly unlimited, although it lost any semblance of intelligence when it transformed back.
- Main article: Great Rabbit
One of the Three Great Mabeasts, the Great Rabbit was imprinted with the constant urge to consume that its creator possessor, meaning it had an insatiable single-minded hunger that supplanted any ordinary animal instinct. As such, the Great Rabbit was unique in the fact that it would not try to prevent its demise in the event that its life was threatened, as only satisfying its unending hunger mattered to it. Unlike other mabeasts, the Great Rabbit possessed a hive mind-like consciousness made up of numerous small rabbits. These rabbits that could cleave through entire limbs with a single bite had red eyes, white fur, and drill-like horns. The horde moved as one entity and typically numbered in the thousands, swarming and devouring anything that it set its sights on.
Each rabbit could multiply instantly and infinitely, and the collective consciousness would only die when every single rabbit was destroyed. As such, it was considered practically impossible to kill the Great Rabbit. The Witch of Gluttony created the Great Rabbit to act as a food source for starving people. She believed the large amount of rabbits garnered from the replication ability the Rabbit was capable of would provide a bountiful meal for anyone talented enough to defeat the Great Rabbit. However, she also purposefully made the Rabbit hard to defeat, as she believed it would be unfair on the mabeast otherwise. The Great Rabbit tracked its prey by sensing magical signatures, meaning it could potentially be lured to particular places by a powerful mage. In this way, it was at least possible for people to somewhat control the direction the Rabbit rampaged in.
Around four hundred years after its creation, the Great Rabbit's rampage brought it to the lands of the noble House of Karsten in the Kingdom of Lugunica. Luckily, the forces of Duke Meckart Karsten led by the duke's daughter Crusch Karsten and her unofficial knight Felix Argyle were able to drive the Rabbit out of the Karsten territory with minimum casualties beyond wildlife and environmental damage. Three years later, the Rabbit was drawn to a small settlement called the Sanctuary by a powerful mage named Roswaal L. Mathers who wanted the mabeast to devour the villagers as part of a villainous scheme. However, the combined forces of Emilia, Subaru Natsuki, and the Great Spirit Beatrice were able to defeat the Rabbit. Beatrice used her shadow magic to banish the horde to an alternate dimension, never to return again.
- Main article: White Whale
One of the Three Great Mabeasts, the White Whale was a ginormous fifty-foot long white whale-like beast capable of flight. Similarly to the Great Rabbit, the Whale was created by Daphne to feed the starving with the sheer quantity of meat it could provide. However, like the Rabbit, Gluttony made the White Whale too powerful under the pretence of fairness. Unlike the Rabbit and the Serpent, the Whale could be controlled by the Authority of Gluttony used by the three Sin Archbishops of Gluttony. Lye Batenkaitos of Gluttony often used the mabeast as a way to cover the evil deeds committed by the Witch Cult. Lye was so fond of the Whale that he considered it a pet. Whenever the Whale wasn't being used by the Cult, it would rest nearby the Great Waterfall located at the edge of the world.
The White Whale was capable of projecting two kinds of mist—the Mist of Contamination and the Mist of Elimination. The Mist of Contamination affected the minds of its victims, making them suffer pain within their mind that was a similar sensation to hearing nails on a chalkboard. The Mist of Elimination had properties similar to the Authority of Gluttony, as any person engulfed by it would lose their life and be completely forgotten by everyone in the world. When its life was in danger, the White Whale would summon illusory decoys of itself that could fight in its stead, although they would vanish in the event that the Whale perished regardless.
Around three hundred and eighty five years after its creation, a hunt to bring down the White Whale was led by the Master Swordsman Theresia van Astrea. Due in part to her power leaving her during the attempted subjugation, Theresia was defeated and killed by the Whale. Fourteen years later, a second attack on the Whale was led by Duchess Crusch Karsten and Subaru Natsuki as it was covering for a Witch Cult scheme. Thanks to the combined effort of everyone involved, the Sword Demon Wilhelm van Astrea, who was Theresia's widower, was able to bring down the Whale, ending its reign of terror. The White Whale was the first of the seemingly undefeatable Three Great Mabeasts to die.
|Capella Emerada Lugunica · Louis Arneb · Lye Batenkaitos · Pandora · Petelgeuse Romanée-Conti · Regulus Corneas · Roy Alphard · Sirius · Stride Volakia|
|Witches of Sin|
|Carmilla · Daphne · Echidna · Hector · Minerva · Pandora · Satella · Sekhmet · Typhon|
|Black Serpent · Great Rabbit · White Whale|
|Gusteko Assassin Organization|
|Elsa Granhiert · Mama · Meili Portroute|
|Balleroy Temeglyph · Bean Argyle · Heinkel Astrea · Kurgan · Melaquera · Miles · Reid Astrea · Roswaal Mathers · Sphinx · Ton, Chin, and Kan|