|“||I'm Zinyak. Pleasure to meet you. Would you like to join me for a ride?||„|
|~ Zinyak, just before capturing Shaundi.|
Zinyak is an extraterrestrial warlord and the leader of the alien race known as the Zin. During the events of Saints Row IV he invades Earth and kidnaps the Boss, now the President of the United States, and puts him/her into a virtual simulation of Steelport.
The supreme alien commander speaks with an upper class English accent and is described as being a fan of literature. Indeed, he states in his Text Adventures that it his love for literature that inspired him and ultimately lead him to Earth. He makes several references to this throughout the game: he can be heard reading the entire first chapter of Pride and Prejudice on Klassic 102.4; he quotes an entire passage of Macbeth in "Miller-Space", and later in the mission the text adventure consists of several elements of Edgar Allan Poe's works; he compares his final confrontation with the President to that of Mercutio and Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet; and in a post-credits scene, Zinjai reveals that Zinyak used time travel to "build a menagerie of his favorite humans" before destroying Earth, and among them abducted English novelist Jane Austen (who serves as the game's narrator).
Saints Row IV
Zinyak is first introduced in the mission The Saints Wing when he and his Empire begin their attack on Earth. He comes in through the ceiling of the White House and abducts Kinzie Kensington and then Shaundi before disappearing. He also appears later in the mission in the destroyed gunship where he fights the President of the United States and eventually triumphs over him/her. After the President is defeated, Zinyak puts them and all their friends into their own simulation based on their worst fears.
When the President began openly defying their simulation based on pleasantry and order, Zinyak took notice. He remarked that he should have known that a "prison of peace couldn't hold a sociopath" like the President, who insists that he/she is a "puckish rogue." He then throws the President into a Zin-dominated version of Steelport, threatening to destroy the Earth if they attempt to escape. Later, when the President does escape, Zinyak carries out his threat and destroys the Earth. But this only hardens the President, who goes back into the simulation to rescue the other Saints and then get revenge for Earth by killing Zinyak.
He talks to the President throughout the game telling them that he/she will fail and that fighting will cause the extinction of the human race in an effort to discourage him and break his/her will.
In the mission He Lives, Zinyak managed to convince Keith David to turn against the Saints and kidnap Kinzie with the promise that he will be able to bring back Earth. When Keith sees the President being brutalized by two Zin, he has a change of heart and saves his friend, only to be put back into his own simulation moments later by Zinyak.
In the final mission Grand Finale, the President must break the simulation and fight their way to Zinyak. the President arrives in Zinyak's throne room donning a stolen Zin power armor that replicated their powers from within the simulation. Broadcasting to the entire Zin Empire so they could watch their leader extinguish humanity's last hope, Zinyak calls upon his own giant mech suit to fight the President. After a long battle, when his suit came close to destruction, Zinyak retreated behind a forcefield and relied on explosive CIDs to cover him, but the President used telekinesis to throw the CIDs through the shield. Zinyak then summoned his minions to wear down the President, but the other Saints arrive to back up their leader. The President then destroys Zinyak's mech, leaving him vulnerable. Even as the Saints leader was in the process of ripping off Zinyak's head, he defiantly claimed that his minions would avenge his death and exterminate humanity, shortly before his head is torn off, spinal cord included. The Zin then bow down before the President, who assumes control of the Zin Empire.
Assuming all the Saints' loyalty missions have been completed, it is revealed by Zinjai, Zinyak's former second-in-command, that Zinyak told Keith a half-truth; the Zin have no technology that could restore the Earth but they have time travel technology that could enable the Saints to revisit Earth before its destruction. Zinjai then shows the newly crowned Zin emperor the many humans in stasis that Zinyak collected from across history which includes his favorite author, Jane Austen.
Enter the Dominatrix
In an alternative version of the Zin invasion, Zinyak launches at attack on earth and takes place in Steelport instead of Washington D.C. He warns the Saints to back down instead of resisting against his forces, and sends a large cyclops to attack them, which leads to the death of Josh Birk who defeats the alien. The Protagonist gets information from the Mayor Pierce Washington about Zinyak's hangout (which is the old Syndicate tower). The Protagonist arrives and takes down Zinyak easily, and finishes him off with a shot to the head.
After his death, an AI known as the Dominatrix takes over the Zin Empire and imprison the Saints in a virtual world.
In documentary like cutscenes discussing the DLC, Zinyak talks about how he was originally a minor character, but "ate up the scenery" which caused him to be expanded in Saints Row IV. During the player killing Zinyak easily, he is shown to be angered in the commentary by his simple defeat.
How the Saints Save Christmas
Although not appearing, Zinyak is mentioned in the Text Adventures and he plays an indirect role in the story of the game. Decades before the events of Saints Row IV Zinyak had abducted Santa Claus from the North Pole, placing himself into his own personal Hell with no Christmas spirit. This eventually caused the simulation to create an evil counterpart of Santa Claus, named Clawz who serves as the main antagonist in the DLC.
- In a way, he can be considered as an "evil counterpart" to both the Protagonist and Matt Miller with the former starting out as a nobody before rising to the top of ruling an empire and the later for trying to imprison the Protagonist's mind inside a virtual world that would render them brain dead and leave their body to rot.
- Zinyak is the first non-human antagonist in the Saints Row series.
- Zinyak can be seen as a parody of Thanos (more particularly the Josh Brolin portrayal of the character) and Emperor Palpatine.