Bio-Booster Armor Guyver or Guyver is a manga series written and illustrated by Yoshiki Takaya. The Guyver itself is a symbiotic techno-organic (or biomechanical) device that enhances the capabilities of its host.
The manga was originally serialized in Tokuma Shoten’s Monthly Shōnen Captain, the first appearance being in the February 18 magazine beginning in 1985. When Shōnen Captain was discontinued in 1997, the manga was picked up by Kadokawa Shoten who subsequently re-released all of the previous tankōbon originally published by Tokuma. The manga is currently serialized in Kadokawa’s Young Ace magazine. It has been licensed by Viz Media, Star Comics and Chuang Yi Publishing.
A test type Zoanoid escapes from the Cronos Corporation with three Guyver Units. Cronos soldiers attempt to recover the units from the test type, but are thwarted when the test type detonates a bomb that he has concealed in his bag. The Guyver Units are scattered in the blast. One of the lost Guyver Units, known as “Unit I”, lands near two young high school students, Shō Fukamachi and Tetsurō Segawa. The second one is retrieved by Cronos and merges with Oswald A. Lisker to become the second Guyver later on. The final unit falls into the hands of Agito Makishima, who merges with it at an unspecified time. Shō accidentally activates the unit which then painfully merges with him.
Over time, Shō learns more about the Guyver and its abilities. The Guyver is virtually invulnerable, with its only weak point being the Control Metal. With this part intact, it can rebuild the host from the data stored within. If this part is critically damaged, however, the host will be eaten alive by the unit and perish. This is disconcerting and Shō starts to question whether he will ever be free from the Guyver. The situation gradually gets worse with continuously more powerful Zoanoids appearing. This makes it increasingly difficult to protect his vulnerable friends.
As the story progresses it also takes a startling turn, in which Cronos succeeds in taking over the world and reshaping it according to its ideals. The Guyvers are then labeled to the public as a “vanguard of alien invaders”.
Shō Fukamachi / Guyver I
- The main protagonist of the series, Shō is seventeen years old and a second-year student at Narisawa high school. He has black hair and a slim build. He fights Cronos to protect his friends and family than from any need to see the enemy brought to justice. Had he not become host for a Guyver Unit, he would have happily continued in ignorance of Cronos. He cares deeply for Mizuki Segawa with the intensity of first love and Tetsuro Segawa, Mizuki’s older brother, is his closest friend. As he is the host for the first Unit activated, he is known as “Guyver I”.
- A large-framed, chubby third-year student, Tetsuro is Shō’s closest friend. He is highly intelligent and can think rapidly when he has to. He is a rabid science fiction fan and the leader of the sci-fi society in the school, which gives him the background knowledge to make numerous accurate guesses about the Guyver armor, Zoanoids and Cronos. He wears his hair short and has glasses.
- Mizuki is a typical schoolgirl. At the beginning of the story, she has a crush on Agito Makishima, but later begins to appreciate Shō more. She is somewhat short even for a Japanese girl, very slender and wears her hair in a page-boy cut that emphasizes her large eyes.
Agito Makishima / Guyver III
- Agito is of medium build and muscular; he is a third-year student at the same high school the others attend, but looks older. Portrayed as an anti-hero, he almost never allows sentiment to stand in his way. He appears shrewd and calculating. At one point a candidate-member of the Cronos Elite, he is now viewed by them as a traitor. Even though he may have activated his Unit before Oswald A. Lisker, the second Guyver, he did not openly appear in his Guyver armor until after Lisker was eliminated and thus he was dubbed “Guyver III”. Agito shows a frightening knowledge of what the Guyver can do throughout the series. After the Cronos conquest, Agito leads a resistance organization known as “Zeus No Ikazuchi” or “Zeus’ Thunderbolts”, as he plans to overthrow Cronos and steal their power (as the god Zeus did to his father, Cronos).
Shizu Onuma / Griselda
- Shizu Onuma and her family have been serving the Makishima family for many years, tending to their properties and caring for Agito in his youth. Although she is by nature kind and gentle, she can be extremely dangerous when she is acting in his interests since her devotion to him is total and overriding any other consideration. She gave her body to the ambition of Agito and leads the processed “Liberatus” of the Zeus’ Thunderbolts organization, having been transformed into the proto-zoalord Griselda. She capable of protecting the Liberatus from the psychic control of Cronos’ overlords, although her lifespan has been greatly diminished by the transformation.
- Fumio is a widower and Shō’s father, but almost nothing else is known about him. He is captured and used by Cronos as a guinea pig and turned into a Guyver-killer Zoanoid to entrap Shō. He ends up being killed by Guyver I in battle.
- He is a battle creature that hunts down other Zoanoids created by Cronos (except Lost Numbers). By absorbing small amounts of DNA from other Zoanoids, he can replicate their forms and powers, as well as mix the attributes of several Zoanoids in one body. He can regenerate himself even if only small pieces of him are left. Since discovering this ability, he begins killing Zoanoids to take their powers and bio-matter in order to become the most powerful battle creature and becomes a renegade from Cronos. In time, he comes to ally himself with the Guyvers in various battles. Aptom was one of the lost number commandos along with his two compatriots, Somlum and Dyme, who were killed in battle with Guyver I. This leads Aptom to carry a vendetta against Shō. Over time, Aptom questions his own motives and considers Cronos’ part in his suffering. He was originally developed as a Zoanoid with the ability to morph into different types of Zoanoids and possess the power of the types he morphs into, but the project failed and he became a Lost Number. Dr. Barcas was interested in Aptom’s abilities and carried out further experiments on him. This freed Aptom from the mental control of the Zoalords and gave him the ability to rapidly evolve. Aptom also has other unexpected abilities, including the ability to regenerate himself even from the smallest remaining piece of his tissue and the ability to clone himself, each clone having its own consciousness. Throughout the story, he has gone through several different chosen forms after absorbing multiple Zoanoids. His human shape is of a muscular man with a distinctive scar that runs down the left side of his face from hairline to jaw. He often dresses in a leather jacket, jeans and sunglasses.
Toshiaki Hayami / Bio-Freezer
- One of Dr. Odagiri’s assistants, and the one who manipulated security footage at the Relic’s Point base to cover Agito Makishima sneeking Shō Fukamachi and Mizuki Segawa in. He is later the sole survivor of that group of scientists that escaped in the relic, along with the Segawa siblings and Agito Makishima’s aids, after the destruction of the Relic’s point base. The scientists were infected by a deadly virus as Cronos’ means of keeping them under control. The only way to escape death is to be supplied with regular shots or to become Zoanoids. The only way to become a Zoanoid and yet not be slaves to the Zoalords is to become a Lost Number. Since supplies of the medicine were running out, they resorted to attempt to becoming Lost Numbers. Hayami was the only scientist that survived the process, becoming “Bio-Freezer”. He possesses the unique power to affect the temperature of the environment around him to a certain extent. Aptom finds him and, once he realizes what Hayami is, brings him to meet the Guyvers and their friends. Unfortunately, later on his mission with Sho to save Aptom from the three rogue Zoalords, he sacrifices himself to save the latter, knowing that he was going to die anyway, due to flaws in the make-shift optimization process.
Valkyria Forsberg-Lisker / Guyver II Female
- Valkyria is a former member of Cronos and the step-sister of the late Oswald A. Lisker. Her mother was Astrid Forsberg and her stepfather was US Senator Robert P. Lisker. Their marriage was arranged by Cronos to unite the powerful American and Swedish Cronos families together. Robert was quite cold to Valkyria, but initially Oswald acted like a big brother to her. After her mother’s death she came to resent the submissive role she had been dealt and proceeded to work her way up the ranks of Cronos to avoid being used as a pawn the way her mother was. Her goal to show up her brother was destroyed upon his death, shattering her. She stole the artificial control medallion (that was being developed by Cronos to create their own pseudo-Guyver units) and became “Guyver II Female”. She resisted any of Cronos’ attempts to stop her and has teamed with the former Zoalord Richard Guyot. She is plagued by bouts of fatigue and dizziness even in human form as a result of becoming a Guyver.
- A mysterious figure that has begun collecting Zoacrystals from the deceased Zoalords. He appears to wear a dark armor made from the same material as Guyver’s control metal. He has demonstrated mind control, an ability only seen used by Uranus or Zoalord. He also mimicked Caerleon’s self division by manipulation of ‘unfolded space’. Dr Barcas has speculated that Apollon could be a vanguard of the Uranus. He also appears to be on a tight schedule. He is likely based upon apollyon. Even though the katakana is closer to Apollon, the kanji that is often used beside it is abyss.