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Introduction

Hello

Ae some of you who are reading this know, Me, Ever and Matt were researching into Shin Megami Tensei in order to revise the profiles of the verse, which overall is really severely outdated and lacking in Explanations about the capabilities of the Characters in the series. So this Blog will try to explain what makes the verse so impressive, such as the big powerscalling chain and the haxes the characters have, which are heavily understimated many times due to the fact that the pages suck

So... bear with me

The Nature of Gods and Demons

Essentially, the basic premise of the Shin Megami Tensei franchise is that Gods and Demons are beings created by the collective beliefs and Observations of humans, and as long as humans exist, the conflict between Law and Chaos will go on forever and will never end

Now, what exactly is Observation?

In SMT IV: Apocalypse, Stephen explains that Observation is a power given to Humans by The Axiom in the dawn of time. He describes it as the ability to give form to the formless, and assign an answer to that which has no answer - Putting this in less flowery language, this means that the Megami Tensei universe is something extremely subjective, that is shaped by the Observation of humans that possess a shared understanding of how their world functions, which reflects itself in changes upon reality. An example of this is how the sensation of seeing colors such as "Black" is not something that can be easily communicated through words alone, although since all humans possess the same definition and share a collective understanding of the color "Black", then the perceived color that is observed by humans is deemed to be "Black"

Likewise, certain Gods and Demons originally existed as phenomena of nature, such as the rain that falls upon the earth or the lightning in the skies. However, they were personified into beings on their own and trapped into what Dagda describes as "god-shaped shells", all because of the fact that the primitive humans assigned answers to physical phenomena that in their eyes were unexplained and that must have been caused by Divine Forces that lived above their world - this is what caused the creation of Demons and Gods such as Thor or Zeus, the lack of what could be considered "common understanding" today led the Humans of ancient times to seek a supernatural answer to events that were seemingly without purpose or substance and likewise, our vision of the world as limited by the laws of physics and other principles "discovered" throughout history is certainly also a result of human Observation shaping reality, allowing these mundane ideals to co-exist with entities such as Thor and Aeros, even if the both of them are "answers" to physical phenomena that completely contradict what is believed nowadays

However, in spite of Dagda's statements that beings like him are anthropomorphized phenomena, Demons are not physical entities, and are actually beings of pure, raw information that is often equated to Computer Data in several games, such as in Shin Megami Tensei II, where Stephen explicitly states that he expanded the memory of the COMP utilized to summon Demons by compressing the "data" of the minions inside of it, this is precisely the reason as to why summoning them through Computer Programs is far easier and more efficient than invoking them through mystical rituals of physical nature

And as you may already know the existence of Demons as shaped by Observation is completely retroactive, and they defy the laws of linear time and causality with their very existences, as entities who always existed in some form despite having been created by Human Observation – A great example of this is YHVH Himself, who created the Multiverse yet was unconsciously created by Humans. This is due to the fact that they take shape and form in plane of existence known The Expanse, a location that stands as the space between universes, while standing beyond the multiversal space-time as a higher reality of conceptual nature generated by the thoughts of mankind, Shin Megami Tensei II is one of the first to establish Demons as being formed there, as they are born directly from a section of the Expanse known as Binah, the Sea of Harvest. Although only later games elaborate on its nature as a realm with no Time which transcends past, present and future; this is what allows Demons to have always existed in the mystical past in spite of having been shaped by Human Observation

Demons existing beyond Time and Causality is also supported by a line of dialogue from Lucifer, which defines beings on his caliber as being eternal entities who exist throughout all of Time simultaneously, and stating that their death is something of little to no effect on their existences, since killing them in the present moment will not be of any consequence to their future selves, which will remain unaffected by the ordeals their past selves have gone through

Heh... Looks like I've been killed again. I had originally thought that we were superior to you, I am starting to realize that may have been a mistaken assumption on my part. We and you are just...different, that's all. The more I think about it, the more that seems to be the case... It was definitely that way before, but you're the main players in this world. The world may be ours but you are the ones at its core. Are we nothing but supporting characters? Hmm....
Everything has a back and a front. This is true for all matters. You may have thought that you killed YHVH, but on a larger scale, that is just for an instant, a mere blink of an eye. Don't get me wrong, you definitely did kill him, but one could also say that it's impossible to kill him as well. This is the flow of time, the front and the back.
Using YHVH as an example, existences like my own...in a way I always exist, and YHVH also exists everywhere. The end result for this time around...well, let's just say I remain inside you. It feels kind of good here. I think I'll stay here, just for a little bit. Oh, don't worry, I won't be here forever. It'll be just an instant, a mere blink of an eye.
Soon the next main player will appear. And so will I...And also...

Demons also don't perceive Time in a linear manner, as confirmed by Kazuma Kaneko, who stated that Lucifer's appearances as a child and an old man are to represent how he perceives the flow of Time

God says, "I am Alpha and Omega." This is the beginning and end, in other words, everything in the world is God's work. Lucifer, the king of the dark, embodies all of the dark side of the world. If creation is the work of God, destruction is the work of Lucifer. The two may be related to each other like personas. So the concept was an intellectual-looking child seeing from the beginning to the end (the future), an old man who views the present in a considerate manner, and, depending on the player's choice, a sinister demon.

In the game he is there to tempt the player and give him trials to test him. I previously called him the king of the dark, but that was just to make explaining him simpler. In the world of the Megaten series, I don't consider him as evil; he is just a character that tests the player. So visually I portrayed him as elegant and gentleman-like.

According to one theory Lucifer is said to look like a beautiful angel with 12 wings, but in this game he is portrayed as demonic with 6 wings. This is the style I picked to represent the dark side. In Megaten 1 and 2, he appears as an angel with 6 wings, so combining them you'll get 12 wings. Throughout the series, he has appeared as a child, and old man, a gentleman, an angel and a demon. This is to show that he is omnipotent. I believe there will be a time when he will reveal his true form, a combination of all his other forms, to the player.

In addition, weaker Demons need a substance called Magnetite to manifest themselves in the physical world, said substance is also stated to be unbound by the laws of physics, and thus it is capable of acting as a source of infinite energy for objects and the like

Okay so, now we know that SMT Demons are non-corporeal, conceptual entities reliant on Humanity itself, and this extends to levels that go beyond baseline Mid-Godly Regeneration and Type 8 Immortality. As shown in Shin Megami Tensei IV, where a group of otherworldly beings known as "The White" - who are the embodiment of races who were destroyed by the Angels and wiped out of existence - quickly resurrected after being killed by Flynn, as their... "nonexistence" was intrinsically connected to the existence of Humans, and they then proceed to state that so long as humanity exists, they will never truly disappear

So this clearly shows that the Type 8 Immortality that Demons have allow them to return after being erased from Nonexistence. But looking into Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse, we have some evidence that make their Immortality even more broken: Essentially the game states that although Gods and Demons can face each other in the battlefield and eventually destroy each other, the effects of their deaths is something temporary that they can easily resurrect from, and they can at most seal one another in an attempt to put them down, as they simply return to the Axiom upon their deaths and reincarnate once again.

But as Lucifer states, a Human has the ability to completely destroy Demons for good through the power of Observation given to them by The Axiom; by negating aspects of their existences, Humans can transform Demons into things that are capable of being killed - this is exactly what happened to YHVH in the final battle: After denying his Omnipotence and status as the ultimate and unchanging truth of the universe Nanashi and his allies could diminish him to a less-abstract state of existence where he was no longer one with existence, reducing him to a demon-like form that would eventually slip from the minds of humans and be killed for good

This... brings pretty large implications to the table. A big plot point in Apocalypse is that without humans the war between Law and Chaos will never come to an end, as the Demons would just keep warring forever, with no side ever emerging victorious upon one another. This would explain why YHVH's main strategy when dealing with lesser Gods was debasing them as demons by sealing them or fusing them with other deities or simply splitting them in two halves, or why certains Angels and Demons return in other games despite being killed by vastly superior beings, such as Mastema returning in SMT IV despite being killed ded by Lucifer in the Chaos Route of Strange Journey

Now then, this brings us to a crucial point that shows just how broken the Demons' Immortality is: They don't need Humans to live

Yes. Even if they are created and shaped by Humans and their Observations while being reliant on them to some degree, Demons are completely independent of whether or not humans exist to remain in existence. And given the aforementioned characteristic of having originated in a realm beyond Time, the starting point of their origins as observed by our perspective is 100% meaningless to them. One of the most blatant examples of this happens in Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne - where the Demi-Fiend defeats Kagutsuchi without presenting a reason or a philosophy in which the next world will be shaped by, this results in Kagutsuchi dying and sending the entirety of the Amala Multiverse to nothingness and bringing about the destruction of the Sangai, and making everything explode across... all points in time

This would have obviously meant that Demons have ceased to exist completely, both due to the fact that their origin points as perceived by Humans have been erased, and due to the fact that all humans across all universes throughout all points in Time have been destroyed. Instead, Lucifer and YHVH's armies are completely unaffected by this in any way, and some Demons might actually have regenerated from it instead of having resisted the destruction of Amala since among Lucifer's forces we see Forneus, a completely fodder Demon who acts as the very first boss of the game, and who shouldn't be 2-A in any way, shape or form

Another example of this happens in SMT II, albeit in a much smaller scale, where Satan wipes out all life on Earth through the Megiddo Ark and despite Lucifer's warnings that demons cannot exist without mankind, he and other powerful Demons such as Satan and the Archangel Gabriel are unaffected by this and only really die when YHVH is killed by Aleph


So to sum all of this information:

  • Demons in SMT are Non-Corporeal, Acausal Abstract Entities created and shaped by Human Observation, who personify the concepts associated with them. Such as nature gods personifying aspects of nature and the like
  • Gods and Demons cannot kill each other for good. And only a Human with strong enough will and Observation is capable of killing them in a definitive way, as they will simply return to the Axiom and be resurrected by it again and again and again
  • Demons are not dependent of humans to remain in existence, as even the destruction of all humans in the Multiverse across all points in time does jack-shit to them and their Immortality / Regeneration
  • Godslayers and Humans are capable of using Observation to strip away Gods from their divinity, as seen when Nanashi and his party denied YHVH of his Omnipotence and reduced him to a state where he could be killed without destroying all of existence
  • Powerful Demons exist throughout all of Time and Space, and are unnafected by the ordeals that their past selves suffer

Summing all of this into Powers and Abilities:

-High-Godly Regeneration and Type 8 Immortality for all Demons, which visibly works on an 1-C scale given that it comes from ties with the Higher-Dimensional Supreme Being of the verse, and renders them incapable of being permanently killed by vastly superior beings

-Conceptual Erasure capable of negating the High-Godly, 1-C Resurrection provided by the Higher-Dimensional Supreme Being for Godslayers

-Omnipresence across Space and Time for powerful Demons of Lucifer's caliber

The Powerscalling Chain

As many already know, Shin Megami Tensei as a verse is pretty up there when it comes to 2-As, although to be quite honest, the current pages are quite lacking when it comes to properly conveying the sheer scale of the verse as a whole, making it difficult to understand why, for example, YHVH is considered the absolute king of 2-A without going through several layers of pages until you grasp the whole thing. This section of the blog will be used to explain the boring as hell chain that makes SMT so powerful

First, we have the absolute weakest 2-A in the series: Ouroboros Maia, who embodies the concepts of Infinity and Eternity even in relation to Demons such as Morax, who are capable of creating and fully controlling entire Universes inside of the Schwarzwelt

The fact that she is the weakest of the Mother Goddess you battle in Strange Journey makes her scalable to any relavant Mother Goddess the comes after her. Two of which are Tiamat and Maya

Due to both of them being portrayed as the strongest Demons of the "Night" race in different games, Maya should be comparable to Lilith, who in turn is weaker than Michael, and who should be comparable to lesser Archangels such as Gabriel, Uriel and Raphael

We wil get to more of the Four Cardinal Archangels latter

Now we have to look at the first notable 2-A entity in the series: Kagutsuchi

Kagutsuchi is an avatar of YHVH and the harbinger of an event known as The Conception, which occurs when a particular world is reaching its demise and is imminently going to fade away into Nothingness. In it a specific location is twisted into a spherical shape and fused with the Demon World and the God World, while everything else in that universe is erased from existence, giving origin to what is named as The Vortex World

Kagutsuchi then proceeds to spare a few human beings of it's choosing to eventually decide the ways of the next world, created by Kagutsuchi using a particular philosophy presented by one of said humans as it's basis, which will eventually define the laws and rules of the soon-to-be-born world. This process forms an endless cycle of creation, destruction and rebirth that spans across the infinity of the Amala Multiverse, where an infinitude of different worlds face the same fate of death and rebirth ad-infinitum, with Kagutsuchi always manifesting in one of them and perishing at the hands of one of the life-forms of his choosing in order to usher the creation of a new world

However, in the True Demon Ending of SMT III: Nocturne, the Demi-Fiend chooses to reject all reasons, and upon defeating Kagutsuchi without presenting a philosophy or school of thought that will act as the basis of the new world, the God dies and leaves the entirety of the Amala Multiverse with him. Although this at first seems to be a baseline 2-A feat, it gets much more impressive when a few lines indicate that Kagutsuchi maintained the Sangai, which is a Buddhist concept that represents the three aspects of time - past, present and future, and putting this together with the fact that each Universe that resides in Amala possesses infinite different iterations caused by the endless cycle of death and rebirth that spans creation, you can very well reach to the conclusion that Kagutsuchi maintained the Multiverse and all of it's iterations across all points in time, and upon his death it exploded... across all of time. This is quite obviously infinitely above baseline 2-A if you are keeping counts of numbers

I speak to my disciples--
In the future I see the destruction of the Sangai.

When the sound of the revolving drum reaches the ends of the universe,
the Eastern Palace will enter into the Taizo with glory.

The people of the world will become as red souls through Daihi,
and the throng of demons will follow this transformation.

The secret master will stand before the souls' Renge and announce a Kotowari.
This will become the Law of the Creation of the world.

~ --From Book 4, Section 24 of the Miroku Scriptures

And this feat is actually supported by Lucifer saying that the concept of Time has died along with the Multiverse, and stating that creation is no longer possible since the endless cycle of death and rebirth has finally came to an end. So... Yeah. Kagutsuchi is actually the weakest avatar of YHVH seen in the series, given that he is completely worthless compared to other most prominent avatars such as Metatron, and powerful Demons under Lucifer's army actually survived this ordeal and didn't actually seemed to care in the slightest about all of it; With that said, YHVH's armies didn't really cared about it either, then both armies started warring

Other Avatars of YHVH[1]who should be comparable to Kagutsuchi are Shaddai, Elohim and Sabaoth, who as you might have guessed, embody YHVH's names. Although, these avatars along with Kagutsuchi should still be far stronger than the Fake YHVH created by the combined faith and power of Michael, Uriel and Raphael

So, going into stronger beings in the food chain, a step above Kagutsuchi and The Names of YHVH is Metatron, the Voice of God and one of YHVH's primary avatars when interacting with the world. With him being described as the "Mightiest warrior of Light" by Lucifer and representing God's mind and will, and his voice alone was compared to the Amala Universe, so it is natural that such a major aspect of YHVH would rank above someone as worthless as Kagutsuchi

Another primary, major aspect of YHVH's being is Yaldabaoth, the Gnostic Demiurge who created the physical world in the same traditions, and who is portrayed as being vastly above Metatron in Strange Journey, to the point where he casually slaps him away while in a berserker state, and is said to literally represent YHVH's power and to be the greatest of his fragments.

However, when you defeat Yaldabaoth in the same game, he is transformed into light and is absorbed by Metatron, and you can choose to simply watch the fusion, which results in Metatron and Yaldabaoth merging with each other to reach a vastly more powerful form, as the combination of God's power and will, which was stated to be gradually reaching "His true form, full of light", obviously referring to YHVH Himself in this case

...This same Empowered Demiurge is casually sealed away by Mem Aleph, the Archetypal Mother Goddess that mothered all demons, who asks the Protagonist to turn off the scanning function of his Demonica Armor to destabilize the fusion between Metatron and Yaldabaoth, allowing her to seal them both. This also falls neatly in line with the Mother Goddesses having managed to tore apart a weakened form of YHVH and then proceed to seal his fragments across several different dimensions, with this series of shenanigans being what allowed the aforementioned events to happen in the first place

  • Mem Aleph also has a feat of causing a tremor throughout the entirety of the Schwarzwelt by breathing, and this is impressive as hell considering the Schwarzwelt is a collection of multiple space-time planes layered atop of each other

A step above Mem Aleph is her primal form, Empty Mem Aleph, which is an entity of sheer, naked power who has casted aside her future and the very reason of her existence to devolve into a far stronger and more primitive form, which will disappear once her current goal has been met, or if she has been defeated

Additionally, an important object in Strange Journey REDUX is the Cosmic Fruit, the sixth of the cosmic eggs that is scattered in pieces across the Schwarzwelt, in the possession of different Demons. It plays a pretty important role in the game, and is the source of the power of the Three Wise Men, being the catalyst to their return to their original form as the Shekinah, the Feminine Aspect of YHVH's divinity and one of His most primary avatars – who should naturally be far above Mem Aleph herself, since the Cosmic Fruit allowed her to use the powers of Gods such as Zeus and Anahita, and it's final fragment alone empowered Alex, Amon and Shaytan to the point where they could fight with the Protagonist immediately after he defeated Mem Aleph

Then comes Lucifer, who stands far above the likes of a chaos-aligned deity such as Mem Aleph due to being the Embodiment of all Chaos and Destruction in existence, and being called "The greatest power of Darkness, created by The Great Will itself" in Nocturne, and being certainly above Shekinah as well, as some sources describe him as a powerful aspect of YHVH who once stood as the one closest to him alongside Satan before falling from grace. His power boosts considerably upon fusing with Walter in Shin Megami Tensei IV, reaching the point where he considers Yaldabaoth to be completely non-threatening, calling him "a mere Godly Spirit" and warning that the "Final Enemy" is far greater than him

This brings us back to the Four Cardinal Archangels, who lead Gods army and stand as some of His most powerful servants. Although they are generally unimpressive individually, their combined power is depicted as being extremely dangerous across the series an example of this is in Devil Survivor Overclocked, where their combined might is portrayed as a far greater threat than Metatron himself, with Naoya starting to freak out when a defeated Voice of God tries to summon them and warning that the entire human world will be destroyed if he succeeds in doing so, with "Human World" most likely referring to the Multiverse in the context of the game

  • This leads to an interesting statement made in the same game, which says that Demons and Angels cannot exert their full powers in the physical world, and need to move to higher planes of existence such as Heaven or the Expanse to utilize their full strength. This alone places the Shin Megami Tensei characters as unquantifiably higher on the 2-A scale, given that Metatron and the like should still scale to Kagutsuchi even while being restricted from their full powers, and due to the fact that the combined power of the Cardinal Archangels would destroy the Multiverse

Another example of this is found in SMT IV, which marks the appearance of Merkabah, the Chariot of God and fusion of the Four Archangels, which serves as the response of the Archangels to Lucifers increase in power, as a way to rival the Demon Lord and allow them to combat him to a standstill. However, even their combined power is not enough to form Merkabah, which needed the "son of man chosen by God", to be truly formed, this results in Jonathan offering himself and entering martyrdom so the Archangels can form the Chariot of God, which as mentioned before, actually manages to match Lucifer in strength

However, both Lucifer and Merkabah are deathly scared of Lord Krishna, who manages to pose such a threat that they agree to form a temporary alliance to deal with him and his faction - the Divine Powers, which is a group formed by Gods who became sick of YHVHs creation and want to usher the formation of a new Multiverse where all Gods shall be worshipped equally, whereas all souls will exist in union and form a great singularity inside of Krishna, much like the Hindu concept of Paramatman

As the main-leader of said faction, Krishna should obviously be far above the likes of Shesha, who managed to severely injure Lucifer and make him groan in pain with a surprise-attack, and the same Shesha was actually going to replace the old Multiverse[2]that YHVH created by transforming himself into the Cosmic Egg, which would hatch into a new Multiverse in the full moon after enough souls had been gathered.

Above Krishna and the Divine Powers is Kuzuryu, a divine super-weapon commanded by YHVH with the purpose of destroying and annihilating all of Earth, and should all of it's nine-heads be released, even the Expanse would not be spared from the destruction they would cause, which would completely annihilate everyone and everything in it; this is pretty notable since, as mentioned previously, the Expanse is a conceptual higher reality formed by the thoughts of all humans which exists beyond the physical Multiverse, so destroying its entirety is quite an absurd feat to say the least. This should also certainly place him above Lucifer, who can only control one of Kuzuryu's heads by feeding it with Magnetite Energy, and even this same head was strong enough to do battle with Aleph shortly after he and his party killed Lucifer in the Neutral Route, and it is one of the absolute last challenges that you fight against before YHVH Himself

Then, above Kuzuryu we have Satan, the ultimate servant of God and the primal angel who stands as the one closest to his Glory, being the strongest of all of his avatars and emanations, feared by Lucifer himself and whose task is to Judge and Punish all beings in Creation, with no exceptions.

Transcript of a scene from SMT II which confirms this


Zayin: Why...me...To save the people...to save as many as possible...isn't this what God wanted...? Where...is God? Is he nowhere to be found...? Or is this...his will...? The center abandoned those that believed in God and worked for his sake...the Elders...Did God choose them...and abandon me... God...

Voice: There is no God!

Zayin: !? Who's there!?

Voice: If God will not interfere no matter what happens to you, then God will not interfere no matter what you do, either.

Zayin: !?

Voice: Don't force yourself to obey. Were you not born in the name of God?

Zayin: ...Well...

Voice: By definition, is not whatever you do God's will?

Zayin: ...Whatever I do...

Voice: Do not try to obey something. Do not try to obey someone. Do not think of God as having just one face. God is not good. God is everything. Everything is God. You too can become a face of God.

Zayin: Become...a face of God...

Voice: You are not one to be judged and punished. You are the ultimate Temple Knight. As the one closest to God, obey his commands and become the one to mete out the judgment and punishment.

Zayin: The judge...and punisher...

Voice: Fulfill your role, as the one closer to God, closer than the Center and closer than the Elders.

Zayin: My...role...Punisher in God's stead...

Satan being the strongest entity aside from God Himself is widely supported by the fact that he is always the last entity the Protagonists have to face immediately before God in almost all of his significant appearances throughout the series.

Although in spite of his Status, Satan is far from being unmatched in the verse. Above him is Brahman, the Supreme God of the Digital Devil Saga Multiverse and Hinduism's supreme being. In essence, all Data that comprises reality in the smallest and most fundamental level possible comes from him, and eventually returns to him on an endless cycle of metempsychosis – This manipulation of Data is capable of reaching an extent where he is capable of replicating Satan himself, creating a copy which retained all of the memories of the original and even referenced events in Shin Megami Tensei II

The fact that they are both the Supreme Deities of their own, separate Multiverses should also put him in the same league of powers as the one I will talk about below. As crazy as that sounds... so anyway...

Ultimately, above all other Demons listed previously – with the exception of Brahman. We have God Himself, Picard YHVH

...Just to give you an idea of how powerful YHVH is, all Angels, including Satan and Lucifer, are merely fragmented shards of His own spirit and extensions of His will, with the latter literally being an aspect of God who was discarded upon falling from grace, and even a weakened YHVH was still powerful enough to give "origin" to both Metatron and Yaldabaoth upon being subdued and tore apart by the Mother Goddesses. He also defeated the King of Bel, a Demon far stronger than Metatron and the Combined Archangels, and whose fragments alone gave origin to all Demons who have "Bel" in their name, such as Beelzebub, Baal and Belberith

Additionally, all of Existence is a part of Him per the cosmology details already established in the previous section of this Blog, and he holds dominion over all of the Observable Universe by manipulating Human Observation to suit His own needs, and through this same principle He is capable of replicating any God or Demon whose forms have been witnessed by Humans, to the point where He can repeatedly spam endless hordes of Metatrons and create a replica of Lucifer which perfectly mimicked the real thing, while He controlled all of those summoned "recordings" like puppets with no free-will

So basically the Scaling is:

YHVH = Brahman >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Satan >>> The Kuzuryu (Nine-Headed Form) >>> Krishna >> Shesha (Third Resurrection) >= Lucifer (Walter Absorbed) and Merkabah >> The Kuzuryu (One-Headed Form) > Lucifer (Regular Incarnations) >>> The Shekinah >>> Empty Mem Aleph >> Mem Aleph >>> Yaldabaoth (Merged with Metatron) >>>>> Yaldabaoth >>>>>>>>>>> Combined Power of the Four Cardinal Archangels > Metatron >>> The Names of YHVH and the Ancient of Days = Kagutsuchi ∞>>>>>>>>>> Fake YHVH >>> Michael = Asura >> Gabriel, Raphael and Uriel = Lilith and Maya >= Tiamat > Ouroboros

Hax of the Series

Shin Megami Tensei bears quite a bit of impressive hax abilities under its domain, and it gets underestimated many times due to them not being walls of text or something (... I am looking at you Alice vs Future Warrior. >:c). So this section will be used to list some of the haxes in the verse and their efficiency

Some of the series' most useful abilities are the spells which focus on Buffing / Debuffing the target, to the point where characters can reverse battles that would normally be stomps or speedblitzes, making enemies far weaker while they become exponentially stronger. An example of this is Matador's boss fight in Nocturne, where he constantly maximizes his speed and agility so he becomes vastly faster than you and dodges most of your attacks with no problem at all, until you use a Debuffing spell on him so you can fight normally and without being utterly outclassed in speed – The same thing can happen with any other statistics, such as Strength or Defense. There are also spells such as Dekaja and Dekunda, that remove all statistics amplifications or reductions from enemies or from yourself

There is also a branch of abilities called "Almighty Attacks", which are undodgeable skills that completely bypass all magical barriers and innate / applied resistances, forcing enemies to simply tank the attacks with physical durability alone and without relying on resistances or anything of the sort. And the series also has a branch called "Pierce Attacks", which bypass all resistances in a way similar to Almighty Attacks, although they can go right through resistances to even Almighty Attacks

Shin Megami Tensei also possess Instant Death Spells which can make even beings on your level fall dead on the ground. A prime example of this being Voice / Mouth of God, an Almighty Spell used by YHVH that can make anyone that is hit by the attack die instantly, working even on people that are on the same league of power as he is and bypassing resistances; another ability similar to Voice of God is an unnamed skill Satan uses, where he can kill comparable beings by pointing at them

There is also Azrael, who makes people in the world die simply by blinking with one of the eyes covering his body

However, Shin Megami Tensei's hax is not found only on spells characters have in Gameplay, and there is a multitude of powerful Demons capable of warping reality on a massive scale. An example of this being Morax, the weakest Tyrant you fight in Strange Journey, who can casually create and control an entire parallel universe inside of the Schwarzwelt, or Parvati who holds Kali Ma, who in turn is the embodiment of all Time, as an aspect of herself – There is also Kagutsuchi, who maintains the existence of an infinite Multiverse and of the very concept of Time by existing, and whose manifestations in individual Vortex Worlds are capable of reshaping them into entirely new universes while overwriting the laws of the previous one, using a philosophy presented by the one who manages to defeat him as the basis for the rules and laws of the New World

Other than Kagutsuchi, there are quite a few beings with feats of effortless Reality Warping on a Multiversal scale. The best examples are the Administrators from Devil Survivor 2, a species of Divine Beings that are charged with overseeing the countless universes in existence, and who through a construct known as the Astrolabe, are capable of manipulating and fully controlling the Akashic Records, a database which contains and stores the Information that comprises the world and all of the concepts that define it's past and future. Through it, the Administrators oversee the events of countless different Universes and are capable of rewriting them and freely deciding their fates

During the events of Devil Survivor 2, the Administrator Polaris imposes a test upon Humanity to see if it is capable of evolving, as she deemed them to have been led astray from their purpose after The Anguished One endowed them with language and culture. To ensure said test, Polaris makes use of a tool of the Administrator System called the Void, which is a black scar in the world which slowly consumes into nothingness all that makes contact with it – Although this seems like basic erasure at first Fumi states in this piece of dialogue that the Void is not merely a vacuum which lacks matter or energy, instead saying it is true, absolute Nothingness devoid of any and all Information that comprises the world and it's Concepts, and proceeding to state that the Void consumes and erases things on an abstract level, consuming the very concept that define their existences and dispersing them into it's nothingness

Then we go to another feat that makes the Reality Warping done by the Administrators seem even more impressive: At the beggining of the Triangulum Arc of Record Breaker, the cast of overthrows Polaris and makes The Anguished One become the new Administrator of the world, and after that, he proceeds to completely reset the Multiverse through the Akashic Records, affecting even the Void and reverting the damage it had done to the world

Devil Survivor 2 is not the first time characters are seen affecting pure Nothingness though, in Shin Megami Tensei IV, Flynn manages to temporarily slay otherwordly entities known as the The White, who embody fallen races that were destroyed by the Angels and wiped out from existence, and who I have already mentioned in the first section of this blog; and (again) like I mentioned previously, Godslayers are capable of permanently killing beings with High-Godly Regeneration which works on an 1-C scale, by debasing their truths and destroying the very idea of their existence to the point where it slips from the minds of people

Soul Manipulation and Destruction is not something uncommon in SMT either, since the first two games all characters can kill Ghosts and entities from Judaism known as "Shades", which are literally the attachment to desire manifested in the physical world in the form of stronger ghosts which once resided in the Underworld of Sheol. There are also entities capable of manipulating all Souls in the Multiverse such as YHVH and Creator God Nanashi, with the latter having overriden the former Multiverse with a new one using the Souls of his former friends

Additionally, one of the best examples of characters affecting Non-Corporeal entities is in Strange Journey, which takes place entirely in the Schwarzwelt, a collection of universes separated from the rest of reality where Demons find themselves in their true forms as invisible beings of pure Data, and some powerful ones found there such as Horkos are capable of eating other Demons to absorb them into their own body

Notes

  1. Although commonly called "Avatars", beings such as Kagutsuchi or the Names of YHVH are not actually avatars in the sense of being projections or shadows of higher-dimensional beings which reside on a higher reality. In fact, the original Japanese term used to describe them is "Bunrei", which is a word used to define the act of a God fragmenting part of its own spirit to give birth to another Deity, who is an independent being on their own, yet exist as a part of its parent deity
  2. Although the scans use the word "Universe", it should be noted that the game uses this term to describe the entirety of YHVH's Creation, rather than a single Universe. And it is not the first time SMT uses the word "Universe" to describe what is obviously a Multiverse in-context, as seen in Nocturne