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Arglas DE.png
Species Giant
Gender Male
Age Unknown
Japanese VA Takashi Taniguchi
English VA Stephen Greif
Appearances Xenoblade Chronicles
Future Connected (flashbacks)
Future Redeemed (flashbacks)

Zanza (ザンザ, Zanza), is a character in Xenoblade Chronicles. He is a Giant who were thought to be extinct. He was sealed away on Prison Island and claims to have crafted the Monado.

Appearance and personality[edit]

Zanza appears as a Giant, a large purple humanoid with glowing red eyes. His grey hair and beard are of immense length, and he appears to have arcane tattoos spread across his body.

Zanza is mysterious. He claims to have ancient knowledge and has been watching the wielder of the Monado for a very long time.

Story arc[edit]

As the Mechon attack Alcamoth, Emperor Sorean goes to Prison Island. He uses his authority to open the prison and discover what is inside: the Giant Zanza. Zanza asks how long he has been locked up, but receives no answer, as the High Entia have forgotten about him. He then tells Sorean to do what he came here for: use Zanza's power to turn the island into a weapons platform against the Mechon. A golden shield surrounds the island as beams of energy blast outwards and strike down the machines.

Not long after, Shulk and his party reach the terrace. Zanza welcomes Shulk and tells him that he created the Monado, and that he can remove the restriction that stops it from hurting Face Mechon or anything less than a god - if Shulk frees him. Melia tells Shulk that something is not right about this and there must be some reason Zanza was sealed away, but Shulk decides to free him anyway. Zanza prepares to free the Monado but is stabbed by an anti-ether spear thrown by Metal Face, which also destroys the shield around the island. Face Nemesis attempts to telepathically speak with Zanza's unmoving form, but he rejects her. He then speaks to Shulk and reveals the power is already his, and his body dissolves into a cloud of ether. Shulk successfully uses the strengthened Monado to fight off the Mechon, and hears Zanza's voice approving of his actions while he does so. After the battle once all have left, Alvis speaks to where Zanza fell, and Zanza says a storm is coming.

Zanza continues to be mentioned while the story proceeds. Face Nemesis knows that Zanza is not dead, while Egil is disturbed that he has released the Monado for the "mere child" of Shulk. As the party starts to climb the Mechonis to reach Egil, Vanea tells them that Zanza is the ancestor of the Homs and High Entia, an old friend of Egil, and the one who devastated Mechonis. This is further explained as time goes by: long ago when the citizens of the two titans lived in peace, Zanza used the Monado to command the Bionis to attack the Mechonis. When the battle was over, the High Entia imprisoned the weakened Zanza. The goddess of Mechonis, Meyneth, then put herself into slumber waiting for Zanza to be released again. Now, Meyneth lives in Fiora's body, while Zanza's current state is unknown. Shulk wonders if, by using Zanza's Monado to continue Zanza's "attack" on Mechonis, he's really doing the right thing.

The party reaches Egil and defeats him. As Shulk stands over him, he hears Zanza's voice telling him to kill Egil. Shulk initially agrees, but he then hears Alvis, and then many other memories come to mind, all which convince him that he should not. Egil is impressed that Shulk did not kill him, and explains why, as he thinks back to a moment with his Giant friend. The Giant's name is Arglas, and when he found the Monado long ago, he became possessed by Zanza. Zanza inhabits beings of Bionis via the Monado in order to perpetuate his existence. But Shulk seems to be successfully resisting this, and so Egil now believes he can end Zanza's threat to the Mechonis.

Unfortunately, Egil is wrong. The traitor Dickson shoots Shulk, which allows Zanza to manifest in his true form: a humanoid very similar to Shulk. Zanza explains that he planned this the entire time, ever since he came to live within Shulk after the ill-fated Monado expedition discovered the Monado in the Sealed Tower. He then goes on to say that all life born from him must be returned to him so he can destroy and recreate the world endlessly, so he begins by awakening the Bionis. Egil tries to fight using the Mechonis, but fails, and the Bionis' Monado prepares to destroy them all. Meyneth takes her Monado and uses Fiora's body to contest Zanza, but she also fails, and has to sacrifice herself to protect the party. Zanza takes Meyneth's Monado and leaves in triumph. He appears at Prison Island and causes it to sink into the sea, causing a huge wave of ether to wash over Alcamoth and transform all the pure-blooded High Entia into Telethia, forming the army he will use to wipe out all life on the Bionis.

Zanza watches as Shulk and his party successfully fight through his disciples and reach him in Memory Space. He says that Shulk has allowed him to take Meyneth's Monado, which grants him even more power over the world, and is willing to grant Shulk rank as a new disciple. Shulk refuses the god who only cares about them as food, and Zanza muses that he was mistaken to grant free will to those he desired friendship with. They fight, and Zanza is unable to destroy them. Through some unknown power, Shulk receives a third Monado, which greatly unsettles Zanza. By using his Monado, Shulk defeats Zanza, and the world disappears.

As the world's new god, Shulk must decide what to do next. Alvis guides his decision by telling him of Zanza's story: untold time ago, a mortal man named Klaus caused an event that destroyed the universe and created a new one, with him and Meyneth as its gods. Lonely, they created life in their own image. Meyneth accepted that one day her creations would outgrow her and she would cease to exist, but Zanza refused this, and he created the endless cycle so he could always be. Now with the end of the world's gods, Shulk chooses to create a new world without gods.

Zanza is briefly seen in a flashback scene at the very beginning of Future Connected. Shulk has lost his ability to see visions following his death.

Zanza is mentioned in Future Redeemed by A while discussing Alpha's ability to possess people.

True appearance and personality
Zanza true form DE.png
Species God
Gender Male
Age Immense
Japanese VA Shintaro Asanuma
English VA Adam Howden

Zanza is very similar in appearance to Shulk, sharing his face, general body shape, and voice. He wears a white and tan bodysuit with complex gold lines wrapped around it, and possesses angelic wings and a halo formed of white-gold circular lines.

Zanza only thinks of himself. His entire existence is predicated on continuing his existence for all time, and has no empathy or sympathy for anything that gets in the way. He does recognize the efforts of others when they suit him, but it is unclear whether he truly cares about them.


  • Zanza is the soul of the Bionis.
  • Out of a deep-seated desire to remain known to and beloved by his creations, he sought to keep Bionis in a cycle of destruction and rebirth, thereby extending his life indefinitely, at the occasional cost of his creations' lives.
    • The Great Battle is a result of this desire spilling over to Mechonis; Zanza desired to incorporate the Machina and all other life into his cycle, considering himself above Meyneth.
    • Despite this supposed desire for friendship, Zanza proves to be egotistical, vain, and malicious to the point of psychopathy. He refuses to acknowledge his creations as little more than bacteria, and feels entitled to their lives as a result of being their creator.
  • Zanza, being a god, cannot perpetually exist without a physical body to inhabit. That is, the body of a being born of either Titan.
    • Two of his vessels are known, being Arglas and Shulk.
    • Curiously, Zanza is the only one of Xenoblade Chronicles' two gods to have multiple vessels simultaneously, as both Arglas and Shulk were alive for a significant portion of the game.
  • Zanza seems to prefer lethally entering the body of a being he chooses to inhabit; killing the entire crew of the Monado expedition and completely erasing Arglas' former personality. Shulk is the only exception.
  • He further shows a distaste to creatures with free will, as any race with intelligence will inevitably end up opposing his plan of death and rebirth.
  • Zanza seems to lack awareness of Klaus's continued existence within Alrest, even though the former is aware of the latter's impending death, and even hears Shulk's declaration against Zanza.
  • Unlike his counterpart in Alrest, Zanza's right half of his body is not replaced with a dark void, the reason why is unknown.
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As a boss[edit]

Zanza is fought in a scripted battle at the Mechonis Core, and as the final boss of the game. In all battles with Zanza, his level is displayed as "???".


  • The names Zanza and Klaus sound very similar to Santa Claus, although it's unknown if that's an intentional reference. In Japanese, (Santa) Claus' spelling クロース is based on the English pronunciation while Klaus' spelling クラウス is based on the German or Dutch pronunciation, so it's unlikely.
  • In English and Japanese, Zanza's true form is voiced by Adam Howden and Shintaro Asanuma, respectively, both of whom also voice Shulk and The Architect in Xenoblade Chronicles 2.
    • Adam Howden also voices the Classic male voice for Cross in Xenoblade Chronicles X, and the Nopon Archsage in Xenoblade Chronicles 3.
    • Shintaro Asanuma does the same in the Japanese release of Xenoblade Chronicles X.
    • The only time that Howden and Asanuma do not voice the same character in their respective languages is Xenoblade Chronicles 3's Nopon Archsage, who is voiced by Adam Howden in English, but by Akio Otsuka in Japanese.
    • Adam Howden is also the only English voice actor to be credited in every major installment in the Xenoblade Chronicles series, appearing in both the entire numbered trilogy and Xenoblade Chronicles X.

In other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
United Kingdom flag.svg English Zanza
Japan flag.svg Japanese ザンザ Zanza
France flag.svg French Zanza
Germany flag.svg German Zanza
Spain flag.svg Spanish Zanza
Italy flag.svg Italian Zanza
China flag.svg Chinese (simplified) 萨扎
Taiwan flag.svg Chinese (traditional) 薩扎
South Korea flag.svg Korean 잔자





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Definitive Edition[edit]